Friday, January 6, 2012

Cold Weather

I don't like the cold, but I don't have access to a treadmill and I want to run. This means I have to run outside. Today was about 40 degrees, which is great for January, but I still didn't like it. Here are some tips to make exercising in the cold doable:

Dress in layers. I started with a performance shirt and fleece on. I ended up taking the fleece off after 15 minutes or so. I would have been too cold to start without it, but after I got going, I was sweaty and needed to take it off.

Wear gloves and ear covering. Having cold hands when you're trying to do anything will really be distracting and frustrating. Your core will heat up as you run, but without gloves to start, your hands won't warm up. I ended up taking off my gloves, but only after I was really going and the blood was flowing. The same holds for the ear covering. They will start cold if you don't cover them up and there's no way to warm them up once that's happened.

Warm the air before you breathe it in. If it's really cold, you can wear a loose scarf and breathe through that to warm the air before it hits your lungs. Breathing through your nose, rather than your mouth will help warm it, too.

You don't want to be toasty warm when you walk outside to begin exercising. If you are that warm, you'll quickly get sweaty and risk getting chilled when you take off layers. On the other hand, you don't want to be shivering when you start. I recommend you start out dressed in a way that you'd be ok taking out the trash or running to the car, but not for much longer. One runner in Maine said to dress like it's 20 degrees warmer. That slight amount of coldness will come to benefit you after you really get going and start sweating.


  1. I invested in outdoor running gear just before Christmas. Technical tights & Lulu lemon running pants for my legs. Technical Tight 1st layer top, 2nd layer top and technical jacket. I was amazed at how such thin articles of clothing could keep me warm!

  2. I agree about the magic of the hi-tech fabrics. I wish I had more money to buy more.