5 Cold Weather Running Tips

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Winter joggingIt’s hard enough for me to make it out the front door and onto the pavement on the perfect 60-70 degree, sunny days during the Spring and Fall.  Trekking out into the snow for a cold-weather run doesn’t sound very appealing to me at all.  But, with the proper preparation you (and I) may find that we really enjoy being out in the crisp, cool, wintry air on a beautiful snow-clad morning.

Running in the winter months comes with some additional preparation.  You want to make sure you are properly dressed, your muscles are properly prepared, and your body is properly hydrated.  Learn how to make your winter running routine comfortable and effective by incorporating these 5 cold weather running tips into your regimen.

5 Cold Weather Running Tips

1.  Increase Your Warm-Up.

With the dropping temperatures it is necessary to not only warm-up but spend a little extra time warming up as this will decrease the chance of injuries and increase the oxygenation to the working muscle.

2.  The Metabolic Down Shift.

Everyone knows your metabolism slows down a bit in the winter months; we eat a little more and find reasons not to exercise. Studies show that although it’s a bit harder to get the engine going in the winter, you actually burn more calories doing it. So when the body says “no” the brain says “yes”. Go Workout!

3.  Hydration.Hydration.Hydration.

In the winter and fall months we obviously see less sweat on our bodies than in the summer but believe it or not, it’s still there. The rate of evaporation is at a faster rate in the winter than it appears on the body and we don’t see the sweat. On average, we lose just as much water from exercise in winter as we do I the summer.

4.  Gotta Wear The Right Gear.

First off, we must keep our hands, feet and head warm. These are the first places that will get cold. Remember, the 3 layer system…

1. Whisking layer (silk)
2. Warmth layer (fleece)
3. Outer Shell (gore tech)

Staying warm will keep you exercising longer in comfort with no fear of Hypothermia.

5.  Change it Up.

You don’t have to do the exact workout all year ya know. Studies show that athletes that cross train have longevity in their sport with less injury. So go skiing, snowboarding, try cross country, and even snow shoeing. All of these activities make the time go faster and you truly provide a full body workout.

Scott Weiss, DPT ATC CSCS, http://www.bodhizone.com

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