This winter has been particularly difficult for running (although we may say that every year). Record cold, snow bombs, ice – Mother Nature is giving us lots of reasons to stay inside.
But for some of us – the weather doesn’t stop us, not running outside is not an option. Whether you are training for a spring marathon, streaking (run streaking, not naked streaking – that would be crazy in this weather) or just trying to keep up with your NY’s resolution, you just layer up and head outside. For the most twisted – the rougher the weather, the more we embrace the badass-ness.
Personally – I LOVE winter running! Give me a 30 degree snowy day any time and I will take it over any August morning with 90% humidity. I love the way the cold makes you feel alive, the clean fresh air, the way everything is so peaceful and quiet. You can always get warm in your winter running but you can never get cooler in your summer runs. Last winter, I was injured and couldn’t run outside and it was KILLING me. My PT kept telling me how I would be ready to go just as the weather was going to improve but every time it snowed and I couldn’t be out there in it, I was heartbroken. When it snows, every thing in nature seems so pristine and white, and it is almost as if it provides an insulating layer.
The first few minutes can be tough – the shock of the cold air as it hits your lungs, the way you are a bit stiff in the joints, how you feel a bit heavy in all your clothes – but then you warm up and you breathe in that fresh air and you notice the beauty around you. I believe the cold actually helps you zone out a bit and allows you to focus on other things – numbs your body but heightens your brain.
For those of you training for Spring marathons – like our Newport or Providence races (!!!), it can be tough to get in those miles in winter weather – but if you embrace it, and start to appreciate the beautiful snowy days, the sharp cold days and all the days in between that can be a bit of a challenge, this will help you in the latter miles of your race. You trained through the worst, nothing will stop you in your marathon quest!
For those of you still looking to kick off those resolutions – it is never too late. Find a friend who will help you get out that door. I guarantee that you will feel better running in the cold than if you skipped it and sat on the warm couch. But a friend can help hold you accountable to that plan – you can both be crazy together. When one of you isn’t feeling it, the other can drag you out – and vice versa. If you need a bit of help – check out our Corporate Fitness Challenge. Talk to your employer about starting a team and go all in together!
Enjoy winter’s beauty (but be careful out there!)