Baby, it’s cold outside

Living in upstate New York can be brutal in the winter. The season comes early and seems to last forever. Snow can fall at any time from October through April. It even snowed when I graduated from college in May 2002. Ridiculous.

Last winter. Not pleased to make it’s acquaintance.
After all of these years of living here, I haven’t come to terms with these crazy weather patterns but I’m turning over a new snowflake and trying to embrace them. Last winter my running suffered because I was too busy hunkering down under the blankets eating Christmas cookies. Speaking of, I’m on day 2 of Christmas cookie detox. So far, so good.
I have already run longer into this season than last. While I wanted to hit 250 miles since logging them in September, I’m not sure I’ll get there but that’s ok, that’s what goals are for. Baby steps.
So how have I been coping with the cold temps?

1. Layering is obviously key to this equation. My advice is to wear what feels right for you. My 20 layers may not work for other people (that’s an exaggeration, it was really only 4 the other day). Typical attire consists of a thick base layer tight and wind pants although RM bought me these tights for Christmas:
Novara Women’s Bike Tights from REI.com
While they’re for cycling they seem to do the job so I can’t complain. They also eliminate the need for the wind pants.
Upper body warmth is what I need even more so I’ll wear a wicking long sleeve layer, a wicking tee on top of that, a light North Face running jacket AND a fleece on top of that. Crazy, I know, but at least I can shed layers if necessary.
For my head, I wear a reflective headband that covers my ears but I will add a Smartwool running hat on top of that if it’s too frigid. And for my feet? Two pairs of wicking socks but I will probably switch to wool in the coming weeks.
2. Having a good attitude. If you think you’re going to melt at the sight of a snowflake, chances are you won’t. Going into the day with a positive attitude and telling yourself you can get through it is so very important. The one weather condition I have made an exception for is the wind. The other day wind gusts were nearing 30mph. No way, no thank you.
Canine snowman. He doesn’t look like he’s having fun but trust me, he is.
3. Setting goals. I knew that signing up for a March marathon would be the biggest test I would have to face because of the training I’d have to endure. If you set race goals for yourself – small, large, whatever – it will help you get through the cold months feeling strong and like you can accomplish anything. And just think about how much faster you’ll be in the spring!
Do you enjoy winter runs? How do you bundle up? Any advice for others?

Comments

  1. Jamie says

    I love that picture!

    Mike and I have wool socks (smartwool) and I love them! Yesterday when we ran I didn't even notice that it was snowy out because of those socks.

    We do need to invest in hats, though!

  2. Sassphalt Runner says

    Baxter takes his snow seriously. :)

    I'm not a FAN of running in the cold but I definitely don't want to lose the momentum so I bundle up, cry, whine and pout…and then I'm off!

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