Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Five Tips for Staying on Track During Winter Running

Fall has arrived and that means that it is time to bring out the winter running clothes. As an Oregon native I am prepared for anything the weather throws at me. Boots, hats, scarves and a winter running wardrobe for any condition is something that keeps me lacing up my shoes and heading out the door through the cold winter months. I actually find that I run faster in the winter. I wish summer running had the same effect, but I tend to melt in the sun. Winter just suits me better! I love layering up for fall and today was no exception. 

This afternoon, I went for a short three mile training run and layered up in Hyperwarm tights, running vest, long sleeve top, Nike Free's and my GPS watch. This outfit kept me toasty warm and not too hot so I could focus on speed instead of my core temperature. When looking for winter running gear be sure to get something that is breathable, fits well, wicks sweat and also keeps you warm. Athleta and Nike are my go-to brands for winter running gear. 

Every year sportswear companies like Athleta, Nike, Under Armour, and Adidas come out with new products to protect us from the elements. I really have no excuse not to exercise during the cold winter months. Plus, I have a reason to do a little shopping for myself as the seasons change. If a new pair of running shoes or tights will get you out on the street then they are a great investment. 

Here are my top five tips to keep you on track with your fitness goals during winter training:
  1. Buy the right gear. Get a pair of lined running pants or rain proof shoes so you can't use weather as an excuse.
  2. Find a workout buddy to keep you on track! If someone is counting on you then you are much less likely to skip a workout, even if it is cold outside.
  3. Sign up for a race or a class at the local gym. If you have something you are training for you will be more motivated to put work in. 
  4. Plan your workouts the week ahead so that you know how to budget your time. This one is important, especially with the holidays coming up. Make a schedule of your workouts and stick to it!
  5. Reward yourself after a certain amount of successful workouts or when you reach a goal. Maybe you get a massage when you stick to your workouts for three weeks, or perhaps you get that new sweater your were eying at the store. Whatever your reward - treat yourself to it when you reach a goal.
Staying on track with training in the winter and during the holidays is hard. Chances are you will miss a workout, but if you follow my five tips for success, you should be able to keep up your fitness strong during the winter months.