As a runner I am always looking for ways to hit the pavement EVEN when its cold outside. Today…I woke up to temps that were negative 2 with a wind chill of negative 25. Thats CHIILY!! I can run in some pretty cold temps, but today…NO! It's not going to happen!
Most of us runners L O A T H the treadmill. It's only a necessary evil on the days that you just cannot be outside. Safety first!
LAYER! Thin, wicking layers are a must. DO NOT wear cotton. Cotton holds in that sweat and will keep you cold and wet. Try 3 layers, a base, middle and outer Gore-text to keep the wind and precip out.
With forty percent of your body heat being lost through your head, make sure you wear a nice warm hat. If it's really cold, cover your face and mouth with a face mask or buff. It warms the air you breathe as well as protecting your face.
Gloves. Protect your hands and feet. Although nice wicking running gloves are great for most days, when it's this cold, mittens are a better choice. They allow your fingers to share heat. Hand warmers are a great choice to slip into mittens to avoid getting frost bitten fingers. Add a wicking sock liner under a warm polar fleece or wool sock, but make sure you have enough room in your running shoes to accommodate these thicker socks. Also Gore-tex shoes are a great idea if you will be running in slush or wet snow.
Two words: YakTrax.
Make sure you let someone know your route and a general idea of your start and finish time.
Run with a buddy if they are brave enough to head out with you.
Carry your cell phone. This is a HUGE NO for me usually when I run…but for these temps, its in the Spi Belt.
Make sure that you are replacing fluids even if you don't feel like it. When it's cold, I am never thirsty, however, you are still sweating, and not drinking can lead to dehydration.
Have a warm change of clothes and a nice hot beverage to get you warmed up when you finish that bitter cold run.
Always be safe out there. And remember there are a lot of fun ways to get in that exercise on these cold days if you decide against the run. Skiing; cross country or down hill and snow shoeing are two of my favorites!
How do you stay warm on these bitter cold days when you're just itching for that outdoor run?