It’s 18 degrees outside but I really want to run. I HATE being cold but… I LOVE running; so I’m always in a bit of a quandary when it’s cold outside. That’s where having the right gear makes all the difference in the world.
Here are some tips that have worked for me in the 25+ years that I have been running through cold, Pittsburgh winters.
- Layers are your friend
- Make sure your fabrics are “running” friendly – they have to be engineered to wick away moisture and block wind when needed.
- Slip-resistant, waterproof shoes when there is snow/ice, I like trail shoes for the winter because they are usually waterproof and they have good, slip-resistant tread.
- Good, warm, seamless socks – I like the smart wool.
- Head and face gear. Turtle Fur, fleece bands work great. You can double up and put one across your mouth and the other across you ears.
- Gloves or mittens
- Arm band for your smart phone. This keeps it warm while it tracks your distance…
- Long running pants with a fleece lining when it’s really cold
How I layer.
- I always have a running bra or a running cami as my first layer. For women, this is a must because who wants nipple burns?
- A wick-away polyester long-sleeved shirt, or a smart wool shirt
- A polar fleece jacket
- If it’s really cold, I’ll add a polar-fleece vest on top of the jacket
- If it’s around freezing, a polar-fleece vest over the 1st and second layer works well
- Warm running pants, sometimes two or a nylon pair to put over top when it’s really windy
Where I buy my gear
- REI has great outdoor gear. For the past few years I have bought my running shoes there. If you are a member, you get some member rewards and that is when I try to buy my shoes. Also, they have a 1-year, money back guarantee. I have only had to use that once for shoes that hurt my back and legs every time I wore them.
- Local running store- they will help you with the proper fitting of your shoes and you are supporting your small, local business. Some offer running clinics or clubs that you can join as well.
- Discounter stores like: Marshalls, TJMax, Ross Dress for Less – I have found some incredible pieces at these stores for a fraction of the price. I get most of my smart wool running socks there because they are about 2/3 less in price. In fact, most of my running gear is from the discounter stores. Now would be the time to stop in and get your winter running gear. They have a clearance section. I got a running tank for $10 yesterday.
- Sierra Trading Post – online, discounter of outdoor clothing – I haven’t shopped there personally, but I know people who have and so I wanted to include this for those who prefer online shopping
So, having the right gear will make your cold, winter runs almost dread-free. A good attitude doesn’t hurt either. Just remember that once you put on your gear, that’s half of the battle. It’s making the decision to “just do it” that is the push you need to head out the door.
So, what are you waiting for? Gear up and GO!