When the weather begins to change, it can be tempting to stay indoors instead of going and running outside. But, just because the thermometer has dropped does not mean that you cannot enjoy the outdoors when you want to go for a run. Here are some tips to help you enjoy your run when it’s colder outside.

1. Protect Your Feet

Look for shoes that have the least amount of mesh. Also, be sure to wear socks that wick away your sweat, but will still keep your feet warm. This will help ensure that your feet stay warm and will keep any snow or slush out.

2. Layer It Up!

If you are running in colder weather, the general rule is to dress as if it were 20 degrees warmer. Be sure to dress in layers, so if you do get too hot and sweaty when you run, you can begin to shed layers. Also, it may be a good idea to remember to wear a scarf or mask to keep your face warmer when you are running. Cold air tends to also be very dry, which can cause breathing issues.

3. Warm Up Before You Start

It’s easier to get started on your run if you have warmed up beforehand. Before you start your run be sure to do some stretching and some light jogging. This will help you stay warm while you are running and will keep you feeling great throughout your run.

4. Stay Hydrated

Even in the colder weather, it is important to stay hydrated and make sure that you are getting plenty of water while you run.  You may be losing as much fluid in the winter as you do in the summer, so it’s important to make sure that you always have an insulated water bottle on hand while you run.

5. Stay Visible

Unfortunately, during winter, the sun sets much earlier in the day, which means that there are fewer daylight hours to actually go for your run. It is important that if you are running during darker times, that you wear something that ensures that can be seen by others. Make sure that you wear clothing that is reflective and stay in well-lit areas. It also may be a good idea to wear a headlamp.

6. Change Quickly After Your Run

Once you are done with your run, take a warm shower and change into warm clothes. This will help you recover easily from the winter cold. A warm beverage such as a hot cup of coffee or tea can warm your body up and help you recover quickly.

Training for a Virtual Race During the Winter

It’s important to train before your virtual race, which can be more difficult during the winter months. If you are training for a winter virtual race and you cannot stand running outside during colder weather, you can still complete the race wherever you want including a treadmill. Find what works best for you and your training habits.

If you haven’t signed up for your first virtual race, it’s time that you did! There is no better time than now to start racing. Signing up for a 5K or 10K race that you complete in your own time is easy. In fact, it takes minutes to do and makes you eligible for a finisher’s medal just like the one you’d receive at a sponsored event you attended in person.

Developing a winning mindset can help you overcome the challenges you face with your first virtual race. It helps you adapt and conquer the terrain you’ve chosen to race on. If you have a time in mind that you’d like to beat, you can set a goal for yourself. The thing about virtual racing is that you do it on your own terms, when it’s convenient for you so timing yourself isn’t necessary.

Here are some ways to get into a winning mindset while virtual racing:

  • Pride yourself on having the courage to start. For many people, running a race is a dream that they’ve had for a long time. Unfortunately, for some men and women, time constraints or life events prevent them from joining their friends, family members or work colleagues in an organized race. Having the opportunity to race on your own is incredible. It’s something that not everyone can do alone. That’s why you should be proud of your decision to start.
  • Know that you are strong and resilient. Your body is capable of doing things you’re not even aware of. Keep this in mind when you start to tire or feel like giving up in the middle of your race. It’s okay to run and walk. Virtual races give you greater flexibility. You can even ride your bicycle or take your dog for a walk and have it count toward your 5K or 10K total. The point is to finish what you’ve started because you are strong and capable.
  • Listen to uplifting music or your favorite podcast. This race is all about you! Why not put yourself in the right mindset by listening to music that you love or a podcast that you’ve been meaning to check out? You’ll be amazed at how quickly time passes when you’re doing something fun. Your virtual race can be customized however you see fit. The only thing we advise is that you do it when it is light out and that you remain aware of your surroundings throughout the duration of the race. We want you to put your personal safety first.

A virtual race provides you with the opportunity to discover new strengths about yourself. It allows you to complete a 5K or 10K race at your own pace and on your own schedule. Virtually racing builds strength in your body and character while providing you the opportunity to support charities and causes that matter to you.