Many of us picked up our sneakers this spring and started an outdoor running routine. With gyms closed sporadically, plus the proven benefits of physical activity and getting outdoors, it’s a bit of a no-brainer.
Now we’re in January and you may have felt that twinge of the winter blues. If you have, that’s totally fine and you’re definitely not alone. But just because the temps have dropped it doesn’t mean you need to ditch your running practice and all the mental health benefits it gave you.
This advice is true for almost anything you want to do outdoors in the winter (okay, maybe not if you’re part of the polar bear club). Layering keeps you warm but also, as you start to move, your body heats up. If you’ve properly layered then it’s easy to remove some clothing to keep you from overheating.
Make sure to wear materials that are moisture wicking, especially for the layer closest to your skin. This could be Merino Wool or a synthetic fabric, usually polyester or a blend of synthetics. Cotton as your first layer is not recommended, as once you start sweating it can get damp and stick close to your skin, making you colder.
The best way to know what to wear is experience. Temperatures can vary a lot over the winter. Once you start getting out there, if you pay attention to the temperatures and how you feel, over time you’ll have a better idea of what to expect and how to prepare.
A base layer top Base layer bottom
Opt for a long sleeved running shirt if you have one. A pair of running tights or a light jogger on top of your base layer should work.
Opt for a warm jacket that can also break the wind for the top. If you tend to get cold, add a light down puffy jacket that can easily be removed.
Like your base layers, go for a sock made with a material that wicks moisture. Make sure they’re fresh, so there’s no residual moisture that might make your toesies cold.
Depending on the temps, you might want a toque. If it’s a bit warmer or you tend to overheat, go for a headband.
Be sure to bring your mitts!
Pro tip: If you’re running in the evening or late afternoon, be sure to bring a headlamp in case the sun goes down while you’re out.
Depending on where you live, you may also want to invest in a pair of cleats. These traction devices slip over your shoes to provide traction and prevent slipping.
Remember to consult your doctor if you have questions or concerns about starting a physical activity program. Also, you’re responsible for your own safety out there. Ice can cause slips and slips can cause injury. Winter running can be super accessible, but if you have any doubts, there’s no shame in going for a nice long walk.
Getting out in the winter can be harsh on your skin, particularly if you live in a dry climate. Some of our favourite skin savers when the temperature drops are:
You can use this to protect yourself from wind burn, and for intense hydration all over. Local Beeswax helps keep the rich, nourishing oils in place on your skin and allows them to penetrate deeply.
We love this stick for almost everything. Packed with Tea Tree and other skin loving ingredients, use it to swipe onto any dry or problem areas on your face before you head out. If you’re sensitive to cold sores, it can help you find relief. This little sidekick can also give you relief from blisters.
In SPF or not, protect your pout from the elements with the swipe of a stick. Having chapped lips can be a drag, but using all natural lip butter is a treat!
Hopefully you’re already swiping on sun protection when you leave the house, but we can all use a reminder. Even if it’s overcast, the sun’s rays can get to your skin. If you’re out in a snowy area, the white powder can reflect the rays and intensify the effects of UV rays.
After getting out, there’s no better way to treat yourself and your muscles than with a relaxing bath.
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