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5 Ways to Avoid the Winter Rut

Written by  Friday, 29 January 2016 14:51

Don’t be lazy just because it’s cold outside.  Spring Races are right around the corner and it’s time to kick it into gear. Working out in the winter will keep your energy level up and improve your mood – it’s good for your health, so just do it!

  1. Take it easy – In the winter it is easy to lose sight of why you love to run.  Make these months a time to get your passion back. To re-set yourself in the winter, don’t have a set routine that focuses on pace and intensity -- instead focus on goals that keep you accountable. For example, set your goal to be to run four times a week, listen to your body, and don’t over do it.  Build your foundation for the intense training months!
  2. Layers, layers, layers – If you’re heading outside, wear multiple layers so you can remove clothing as you heat up. Breathable clothing is good for preventing dehydration and overheating.  The standard rule of thumb is to dress for ten to 15 degrees warmer than the actual temperature, wear a hat, gloves, and a scarf; you can always take them off as you go. It may be chilly when you first go outside, but once you’re moving you’ll be satisfied. Lastly, keep it safe. Wear reflective clothing to let other’s know your there.
  3.  Ditch your go-to shoes – You’re going to need traction out there when slush and ice take over your running trails.  No matter how cautious you are, it is easy to miss some icy spots. Grab some shoes with thick traction, it may be heavier, but winter isn’t a time to hardcore train, the weight won’t be an issue. Other options include a low-cost alternative shoe accessory with steel spikes and coils that attaches to your sneakers with a Velcro closure. Or, buy ankle-high sneakers that include aluminum crampons to bite into ice and crusty snow. Walkers may want to buy snowshoes so they can go “off-road” to explore.
  4.  More Warm-Up, Less Time Outside – When running in cold temperatures your muscles take longer to warm up than usual.  If you extend your warm-up you can avoid being cold and stiff during your run. 
  5.  Get Creative – Don’t fear – when it’s too cold outside to run there are plenty of other ways to train.  Run the stairs in your home to get your heart rate up, and engage in cross training.  If the weather allows, try cross-country skiing, or snowshoeing.  You want to be safe, and if running outside in the cold/and or dark isn’t possible, take a different route.

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