Tips for Cold Weather Running

Like most runners, I hate carrying things with me. I hate extra layers, water bottles, watches… anything extra that i have to carry is a huge nuisance and commitment because I am stuck carrying it until the end. I want to be free when I run.

Conventional wisdom tells you to layer your clothing, but they don’t take in to account freezing fingers, numb ears and achy nose from cold wind.

I’ve been keeping pretty good track of what I wear at different degrees and I have found that if my core, my head, hands, and feet are warm that I can handle cold runs even if wear less layers. Here are some more essentials to battling out cold weather runs:

1. A hat – not only does the hat keep your hair out of your face but it keeps your head warm. On really cold days, I’ll put a really thin nylon beanie under my baseball cap to cover my ears, but this only happens when temps drop into the teens.

2. Gloves – I used to hate gloves because they made me feel numb and too covered up, but I do wear gloves once the temperature goes below 30 degrees. I noticed that once my hands get chilled, it’s hard to focus on running because I’m flexing my fingers to make sure they aren’t falling off my body. I have thin running gloves from Champion. I don’t see a dupe online but any gloves should do the trick. You should look for fitted gloves, I find that the fitted gloves bother me less and they tend to be warmer since you aren’t getting cold wind stuck in the fingertips or what not like you do with larger gloves.

3. Warm socks – the shoes aren’t what keep your feet warm, it’s the socks. I’ve already posted at length about my socks, so I won’t say much more here.

4. Vests – to keep your core warm. I never really understood vests. Like… Where are the sleeves?!?! But I bought a neon colored vest to throw over clothes to increase visibility during my late night runs… And I discovered it really keeps you warm. I started putting the vest over my running tops and hoodies and discovered that one extra piece of fabric was better than extra layers of shirts. I like the vests because they keep your core warm, and your arms aren’t hassled by bunching shirtsleeves.

In addition to adjusting my running clothing to include these things for winter, I find adding some really good moisturizer to my exposed skin helps keep it hydrated and prevents wind burn. On really cold and dry days, I swipe a little Vaseline on a q-tip inside my nose and under my lips so I don’t get dried out. I also add some good lip balm to the surface of my lips to prevent chipping.

What about you guys? What do you do during the chillier months?

(I’m writing this on my iPhone, so it might be a little garbled, but I hope it helps!!)

Friday Favorites (Link Love)

Good Morning!!!

In honor of rekindling my love affair with running, I wanted to share my running favorites with you. I started running when I realized during lacrosse practice that NO ONE else was enjoying those long training runs like I was… in fact I realized I only liked lacrosse for the running! So I joined cross country.

Over the years of running, I’ve come up with things that I like in my running gear. I’ve posted links where I found similar things to what I like.

  1. Hat. Always. A deep one that comes down to my ears and has a brim to protect my eyes from the sun. I have a Nike golf hat that is my all time favorite.
  2. I normally run with my MP3 player. Sometimes I listen, sometimes I don’t. I have a Sony W Series Walkman. Mine is the first generation and much bigger than the current ones, which are sleek and come in a few different colors.  
  3. Shirt? I have a variety of favorites so I won’t name them all. However, I look for things that have a comfortable and scooped neckline (don’t want to feel choked). I like things with slightly longer hems to cover my tush and prevent by belly shows if they ride up a bit. And I like my shirts to be cut loose. Those super slim shirts are not my favorite.
  4. Sports bra – I have a few of the Nike Pro-Fit ones and a few New Balance ones… but my general rules are thick fabric, thick banded around the bottom, and generous coverage. I tend to like sports bras that cover more. I’m a 34C and I like to have everything strapped down and secured. I don’t like bras with a lot of stretch because those chafe.
  5. Shoes – I am a diehard Brooks girl. I found them once in a clearance bin at Marshalls, and ever since I have been all over their shoes. The PureFlow ones are my favorite right now, but I also have been a faithful Adrenaline wearer for years now. Not sure about what shoes fit you? Brooks has this awesome shoe advisor
  6. Pants – I wear spandex. I like my spandex to be fitted, tight, and thick material. I also like them to have a drawstring waistband for easy adjustments. For winter, as it is now, I like Saucony and Frank Shorter
  7. Shorts – In the off case I do wear non-spandex shorts, I wear the Nike Tempos. Everyone has them. I think they run a little on the wonky-side of sizing, but they do the job and I can deal with the minor nuisances like the internal lining being HUGE.
  8. Watch – When I started training for my first marathon I had a lot of trouble keeping track of my mileage, so I bought the Nike+ GPS watch. Mine is the first generation one so it’s the standard black and green, but there are many more colors now and it’s supposed to be a bit slimmer.
  9. New – Vests. I recently purchased this Saucony Vest and I’m in love. It protects me from the wind, keeps my core warm, and provides extra storage. It also comes with a little light to help people see you in the dark. I’m contemplating order a few more colors.

These are some of the things that I love for running…What about you? Any running favorites? Share!!!