I guess the title should actually be freezing cold windy running, but I really like the movie, so I’ll keep “Cool Running.” As you know, one of my goals is to blog about my fitness, especially training for a run during the winter. I haven’t EVER trained for a race during the winter, so this is very new to me. There are so many things you need to think about in the winter compared to training during the summer. Also, I would like to emphasize that I am still a newbie runner, so I’m learning as I go.
In the summer I knew I had to run early in the morning before the heat and humidity hit an unbearable temperature. If I ran in the evening, the temperature would be down, but the humidity from the day would still be hanging around, and you can more or less get away with running in anything. NOW, the winter is a whole different ball game. It is cold ALL THE TIME, running in sunlight is a luxury, and the wind will make you forget any memory of warmth (The wind is what kills me).
Here are some lessons I have learned about running during the colder months:
- Layer, layer, layer! Layering is your best friend and your worst enemy. On the positive, when you start running it reminds you that at one point you were toasty warm in the house. On the negative, your body goes through hot flashes whole you’re running; one moment you are overheating, and the next you’re hit with a wintry blast of wind and are freezing again. I find myself zipping and unzipping my jacket as I run and I can’t keep a decent temperature. I hear I should buy quick dry clothes to help with heat insulation, but not sure what to buy. If you have any advice, I would LOVE to hear it! Also, if you know of any great winter socks to run in, please let me know.
- Hydrate! As in the summer, hydration is key. If my runs are ten miles or less, I’ll drink water with mint and lemon essential oils before I head out for my run, anything over ten miles, I need to bring something (I’m still trying to figure out if I want to bring: should I get a camelback, a fanny pack, a handheld water holder thingy… I don’t know).
- Proper nutrition. I’m learning that I burn more calories running in the cold than I did in the summer, because my body is expending a lot of energy keeping my body warm. I’m learning I have to change my eating habits to accommodate this. A banana before a run just doesn’t cut it anymore, now I’m eating toast and a banana, and this will probably change over time.
- When that winter wind hits you, and your skin feels like dried mangoes from Trader Joe’s, you would have wished you had moisturized properly. For my skin, I am a firm believer in organic coconut oil. This stuff is amazing! I dry out in the winter and have always have problems in the past keeping my skin moisturized, but since I’ve started using coconut oil (and yes, I put it on my face too), I haven’t had one dry patch. For my lips, I have made a switch. I have been a try and true Burt’s Bees Pomegranate lip balm girl. This has been my jam for the past five to six years. My only qualm with it recently is it doesn’t keep my lips moisturized during my runs, and I get that gross white tacky grossness (and y’all, this is not attractive, who knows what hot guy I will bump into during my run… I can’t look like that!). WELL, recently a friend of mine gifted me an essential oil lip balm by doTERRA. Since I was such a Burt’s girl, I just added it to my backup stock in case I couldn’t find Burt. It didn’t take long for me to misplace dear Burt… So I found my herbal lip balm, slapped it on, and went for a ten mile run in brutal cold and windy weather (I think it was in the low 30’s this day). FRIENDS… This stuff is AMAZING. I came back MISERABLE and FREEZING from this run, but my lips stayed moist with no white gunky grossness. I’m super sad to be breaking up with Burt, but I found a new love! AND because I love you all so much, my friend Bethany is giving away TWO sets of lip balms (GIVEAWAY INSTRUCTIONS BELOW).
- A hat… duh: I currently wear a baseball hat (GO RED SOX) to keep the sun out of my eyes. But I know I’m going to have to switch to a winter hat soon (I don’t wanna). I’m not looking forward to switching my head gear! How do you keep the sun out of your eyes without wearing a baseball hat? Also, I don’t want to wear runner sunglasses, I just don’t want anything on my face. So, if you know of a really good hat or sun shield method, PLEASE let me know!
There is a lot more to learn, and each day is a lesson in winter running. As I said throughout this post, please let me know of anything I should be cautious of as I continue to cry through winter training (crying and running is never a good idea during winter… cause it’s cold).
GIVEAWAY INSTRUCTIONS: This giveaway is only open to readers in the USA (I’ll try and expand this in the future as I figure out shipping costs abroad). To enter in you must LIKE Bethany’s FaceBook page, FOLLOW to this blog (to subscribe click “Tea Time” button), and COMMENT below on how you survive working out in the winter. We will be choosing TWO winners on February 20, 2017 and will notify you on February 23, 2017 for shipping details. GOOD LUCK!!!!!!!