J Wedge
 
Running in the winter can be such a drag. But really, all of that windy, cold, nasty weather can cause some serious drag. Don't forget to practice these safe winter running techniques so that you can hit the roads (or trails) all winter long.

1) Dress appropriately

Dressing for a run is somewhat of an art. You’ve got to account for your body generating heat as you run. The generally accepted rule is that you should dress as though it’s 20 degrees warmer than the actual temperature. But, you’ve also got to make sure that you’re dressing warm enough. You can’t go outside in capris and a tank when it’s only 30 degrees! Here are a couple tips—

· Cover your extremities. This includes making sure you wear full-length running pants/tights, wearing mittens if necessary, and covering your ears or if it’s cold enough your face. You should also wear long sleeve tech shirts and potentially a jacket. Something that breaks the wind and offers insulation is good for especially cold or inclement weather.

· Invest in a few accessories. Whether it’s Yak Trax for running on snow and ice, a new balaclava to keep your face and neck warm on the run, or a reflective vest to maintain visibility during the darker time of year, it’s important to utilize accessories meant to keep you safe.

randy a christmas story

2) Timing is everything

It’s best to schedule your runs during the brightest, warmest part of the day once the weather starts getting cruddy. Not only does this allow for better visibility, it will also help you stay warmer during your run. If you’re unable to run around noon, use reflective gear or hit the treadmill. It’s really not so bad for those shorter runs!

3) Forget about pace

Maintaining a faster speed is much more difficult when it’s frigidly cold and snowing like crazy. If you choose to run outside in the winter, accept that you’ll likely have a slower pace. This is okay! It’ll help you practice setting a pace for longer runs come warmer weather.

4) Buddy up

While warmer months can also be hazardous for runners, we recommend running with a partner (canine or human) during winter. This is a safety precaution in case you should slip and fall on ice, become hypothermic, or suffer from any other injury. If you cannot find a partner or prefer running alone, always carry your cell phone, run near a residential area, try to wear bright and reflective gear, and make sure you’re dressed appropriately for the weather conditions.

chihuahua bundled up

5) Warm up inside

Don’t just thrust your body into cold temperatures without a good warm up. Do dynamic stretches or calisthenics before leaving the house. This will help generate body heat and loosen you up, making your run warmer and safer.

6) Change immediately after you finish

Trust us on this one. Avoid tinkering around the house before changing out of your wet, sweaty running clothes. Taking too long to get into dry clothes can bring on chills or illness. Neither of which sound like a good time!