For Runners: How To Get Out For A Run, Even When It’s Cold And Dark Outside

For Runners: How To Get Out For A Run, Even When It’s Cold And Dark Outside

November 22, 2016

Time for some winter running tips!

So right now, I’m being asked lots of questions from people online and patients about what my top tips are for running in the winter.

Let’s face it; one of the hardest parts of winter running is simply stepping foot out of a warm house and getting out of the front door.

As soon as your usual time to run comes around the mental discussion with yourself begins:

“Get out and run? Or take a day off?”

Likewise it is also just as difficult for those who run in the evenings to get their running kit on and brave a dark, cold night.

Even though it’s hard to run in the darkness, and undesirable weather, running this time of year has its benefits too!

It’s the perfect time to improve your running and your resistance to colder weather (so instead of feeling cold for most of the day, you might not need to wrap yourself up in so many layers). Finishing a run when you don’t really feel like it can be an incredible motivation booster too, and will help you to get going for the next time you plan a run.

The winter running season calls for a shift in your workout perspective (which is important to staying injury free!) Rather than focusing on running elements like pace and distance, the winter can be a great time to work on your running technique and preparing for any running events and goals you might have set for the year ahead.

With that said, here’s some tips I regularly give to my patients who love to run and get active outdoors:

1. Recruit a running partner – Get your friends to run with you, or even join a running group for support. Knowing you’ve made plans to meet someone will get you out of bed and out the door.

Joining a running group helps to keep you accountable too – plus you’re not running in the cold alone!

2. Make a ‘bad weather plan’ – It’s ok to give yourself another option, especially if it’s wet outside and dangerous to run. Make a note now of what that plan will be – this could be something like getting up and doing a workout at home, taking your running to the gym’s treadmill, or trying some Yoga.

3. Invest in the right running clothes for the colder weather – Having the right clothing for any sport is essential, so invest in the appropriate running gear you need when the temperatures drop. Adding base layers, a hat, gloves and thermal leggings makes getting outside this time of year much more tolerable. As well as that, the right clothing keeps your body warm reducing the risk of injury too.

And for one of the most important tips…

4. Book yourself regular massages – Seriously, this one is great. Book yourself a massage in after a set number of runs to keep your muscles loose and your joints mobile. Not only does a massage feel great, it helps with your running performance too.

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