Running in cold for beginners | What to wear?
As gyms are closed during these complicated times, running outdoors seems like a great alternative to keep your fitness up. However, if you never run in winter before, you might want to prepare with the appropriate gear to make your run efficient and enjoyable.
First thing you have to do is understand it’s not going to be the same as running during summer. It can be cold, moist, rainy, snowy, windy, cold again and so on. After a 10 min run you will be sweaty and cold (again). When it comes to clothes I never paid much attention to what I’m wearing during my runs, but as the weather worsens and the distances get longer, appropriate clothing is vital, especially when you don’t want to end up overly warm and sweatty. Here’s what I found to be most comfortable for the 0 ͦ C - 10 ͦ C weather:
Running Headband, Neckwarmer and Gloves
An absolute must! Running headband is such an ear saver! I get cold ears so quickly, that strangely I start feeling pain in my jaw. This obviously made me want to run back home rather than some long distances. The benefit of the headband whilst running is it holds your headphones intact as well. Especially great when listening to podcasts or music is part of your running routine.
Neckwarmer’s function is pretty basic. To protect your neck from the cold and wind. It’s not superb tight, covers all the neck parts from the wind and most importantly the fabric prevents water accumulation on the skin from exercise. So instead of normal scarfs, this is something every runner who wants their neck covered should consider getting.
Protecting hands - For some, long sleeved running tops that cover most of their hand is enough to feel comfortable whilst running, but for those who have sensitive skin and who’s fingers get cold quickly, gloves can make a big difference.
Winter Run Layers
Generally, in order to be protected in winter weather, layering is something to note!
- First layer keeps you dry and is worn directly over skin. It’s up to you here what you’d like to wear, whether it’s short sleeved or long sleeved shirt is a great base layer usually light and tight-fitting
- Second layer is here for insulation. Rule of thumb - the thicker the layer, the more it insulates. It can be something like a fleece top or long-sleeve top with a half-zip collar - whatever makes you more comfortable.
- Third layer’s function is to protect against the wind and rain. For this a running gilet or lightweight, breathable running jacket works great with the first two layers. It also doesn’t limit your movements, instead - protects your chest and lower back.
Warm full-length running tights is something I found the most comfortable. Normally, the main component keeps your body at the right temperature and provides good insulation from the cold.
To Sum Up
These are the few things I found extremely useful for my winter runs. As you run more often, you’ll start noticing your personal preferences and what works better for you. Wearing the right clothes reduces the chance of catching a cold keeps you dry and warm during your run. Remember, light and moderate speed boost’s our natural immune system (keyword - moderate)!
Have any additional winter running tips? I’d love to hear them in the comments below :)