7 Top Tips for Running through the winter
It's unbelievable how quickly the seasons seem to change and as for the year 2020... well, let's not talk about that. If there's one good thing that's come out of this, more people than ever have taken up outdoor activities, sports, exercise, and running in particular. As the cold weather draws in, it can be tempting to start telling yourself "looks cold, I'll go tomorrow instead" . That's why we've compiled our list of the best ways to run through the winter and avoid that other well-known illness, often referred to as "Skivitis" - characterised by the severe lack of motivation to do something, or to avoid doing something.
1. Reward yourself
Motivate yourself with the promise of a reward, from meeting a friend for a coffee (Socially distanced of course) or a sweet treat - Mint Cake Anyone?
It can be a good idea to plan a run with a friend. When there's someone waiting there's much less chance of you making excuses!
2. Dress as if it's slightly Warmer
It's a difficult balance to find, you want to stay warm enough but without sweating so much that you get a chill. As a general rule of thumb, you can dress as if it's 10/15 degrees warmer. It might mean you're slightly cooler when you start but of course, you will warm up. Try using layers of technical fabrics, it's also a good to have zippers on the neck or even the underarm area so that you can ventilate.
3. Wearing the right shoes
It's best to run in shoes with less mesh. Shoes with Gore-Tex uppers are great. It's also key to choose the right socks, ones that will still keep your feet warm if they're damp. Our naturally-wicking Merino Performance Socks are a good option here.
Merino Wool Performance Socks (Pre-order now) - Kendal Mint Co. | KMC | Quality British Sports Nutrition
4. Light it Up
The days draw shorter and darker so the chances are you'll be running in the dark. Wear reflective clothing, fluorescent jackets, shoes, bibs or hats. Most importantly, make sure you are #Lit. If you aren't aiming for the full Christmas tree lights look, vehicles are less likely to see you. So don't be shy!
5. The Warm Up is Key
A warm up is always important pre-exercise but even more so during the colder weather. Run up your stairs, use a skipping rope or work on some mobilising exercises or yoga. If you're meeting friends for a run it's best not to stand around chatting before you set off. Keep moving!
6. Don't let the wind catch you out
It sounds so simple but it's partly psychological and part physiological. Start your run facing the wind and finish with the wind behind you! You can break it down further by changing directions, using different roads or paths so that you're running into the wind for 10 minutes and then running back for 5. Exposed skin is very vulnerable to chilly winds. Products such as BodyGlide are good options but you can also opt for our Exclusive Kendal Mint Co. BUFF® as a face covering but with that added versatility.
Exclusive Kendal Mint Co. BUFF® (Pre-order now) - Kendal Mint Co. | KMC | Quality British Sports Nutrition
8. Flexible Pace and Mileage
Winter running is often"more about maintenance miles than speed-work" and running in elevated places the air can be much warmer. Up to 20 degrees warmer if you're running trails in the Fairbanks, Alaska-based running club North (One of the most northern running clubs in the world).
If you struggle to get all of the miles in one go due to the weather, run twice a day instead. One morning and one evening for half the distance!