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10 Tips On How To Keep Running During The Winter Months

10 Tips On How To Keep Running During The Winter Months

With the upcoming winter season…and with snow already on some of our doorsteps…many people are now declaring that “It’s too cold to run!”


But with proper preparation you don’t have to stop running this winter. Here are some tips to keep moving this winter, get out there, and breathe that crisp winter air!


  1. Pants and a Top/Coat: Best advice is to Layer up! Here’s where you may want to invest in some fleece running tights, some moisture-wicking long sleeve tops, a vest and a lightweight coat. As you move through that first mile you will find that you can start taking off some of these layers, tying them off at your waist or throwing them behind a tree as you go, so you can circle back in your car or on the way back from your run to pick them up.


  1. Hats, Gators and Headbands: Get all three. You can always shed these as well as you get going. Stuff them in your pockets for safe-keeping.


  1. Mittens and Gloves: When the temp is closer to the teens, gloves don’t do the trick. Gloves topped with a pair of mittens are best especially if you find that your hands just aren’t warm enough with gloves alone. Mittens will create a pocket of air around your fingers in the gloves, ensuring your hands and fingers will stay nice and toasty.


  1. Hot Packs, Handwarmers, Footwarmers: If you have an exceptionally hard time keeping your hands warm, slip these little packets into your mittens. You can also try them in the forefoot region of your sneakers if desperate to keep your toes warm, although this is not advised as your weight distribution in the front of your foot may get altered, potentially causing foot pain.


  1. Socks: Go a bit thinner to allow for air to circulate around your toes. Socks too thick take up all space in your running shoes not allowing that pocket of air to heat. Wool is also recommended as a better choice.


  1. Sneaker Treads: Like snow tires for your car, a run on snow and ice can only be accomplished safely by arming your feet with some treads. Yaktraks and Nanospikes, to name a couple brands, are suggestions. Best to try them on if possible so you can experience how easy (or not) they are to put on as well as how the bottoms react to normal non-slippery roads.


  1. Hydrate: You will Sweat! No different than when you run in the summer, your body will sweat except the air in the winter is far dryer both in our houses from excessive winter heating and outside our houses from the dry winter air. If you can’t hold a water bottle and plan to be out for more than an hour, then stash a water bottle or two along your route for those longer runs.


  1. Nutrition: If heading out on a long run and you typically need to get some goo or gel blocks into your body every few miles, remember that it is cold…so you may find these little snacks are frozen solid! Store them close to your core so that you won’t be disappointed when you go for them and they are a brick.


  1. Be Bright: Wear brightly colored jackets and hats. There is quite a bit of glare from wet roads and glowing mounds of snow. You think drivers can see you but they don’t because their windshields are perpetually dirty as the mist and salt flies up off the road and on to their cars. Then once the sun hits the windshield the driver sees nothing for a moment until the curve in the road changes the light distribution. During that moment…you could be running on that side of the road. Be smart and run on the opposite side of the road, facing oncoming traffic and expect that drivers DO NOT SEE YOU!


  1. Earbuds/Headphones: And lastly…a further note on safety…don’t wear earbuds or headphones. Cars travelling on snow packed roads are much quieter and can sneak up behind you. Keep your ears clear.


Hopefully with these winter running tips you can stay warm and keep moving during this winter season!


If you have any other reasons that you can’t run, then please don’t hesitate to call BodyFiT Physical Therapy for a Running Analysis which includes a Running Physical and Treadmill Run Analysis. Call 860-507-7365 or email cindy@bodyfitphysicaltherapy.com.