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winter runner

Are you a Runner? Things to Know Before Running in the Cold

The cold is back and with it comes some winter activities like snowboarding, skiing, skating and tobogganing. Some people however, enjoy their morning run even in the winter time. Running is a great way to keep your blood circulating and staying physically as well as mentally healthy.

Here is a list of things to keep in mind:

  • During the colder months sunlight is typically limited, so be aware that you may have a hard time seeing as you may be running in the dark.
    • Remember to wear clothes that help others see you better.
  • Do some stretches and warm ups to get your heart pumping before you head out for the real thing. Pre-run warm ups help prevent your body from being “shocked” when you begin to run.
  • The core body temperature drops after a run when we stop moving, therefore to avoid getting sick or chilling, remember to:
    • Change your clothes as soon as possible
    • Hydrate and stretch to allow your body (to recover) temperature to regulate
  • Hydrate, hydrate, and hydrate
    • Regardless of the outside temperature it is important that you keep your body hydrated.
  • When running on a cold windy day, run with the wind in your face first. This helps to prevent chill from sweat and may even help with fatigue in the finishing stretches.
  • Your body depends more on carbohydrates for energy in the cold weather than it does on fats. For high carb and healthier options try:
    • Sweet potatoes
    •  Quinoa
    •  Oats
    • Banana, Oranges, Apples, Blueberries
    • Kidney Beans and Chickpeas
  • Avoid overdressing with choosing the right layers to keep warm. Wearing tight clothing while exercising traps your body’s natural heat in and can help reduce feeling chills.

Dressing Head to Toe

  • Head – wear hat or ear muffs.
  • Face – wear breathable mask or wrap a scarf around your mouth.
  • Core – wear 2 layers for temperatures below 0 degrees C and 3 layers for temperatures below -12 degrees C
  • Bottom – Wear tights underneath your pants if temperature is below 0 degrees C.
  • Feet – Wear moisture repellant socks. Wear warm, water repellant and slip resistant shoes
  • Hands – mittens are warmer than gloves