“Some days it’s not about the speed or miles, its just therapy.”
Many of us have heard this. The distance and speed of your run doesn’t matter, what matters is the benefit you have gained. Running has many benefits, but in winters running may be a challenge. You cannot just leave your home when it’s windy and cold and start jogging! Temperatures in the 30s and below tend to make your body inactive. It may cause stiff joints and tightened muscles. So, winter running requires special preparation. That way, you’ll perform well, prevent injuries, and enjoy it! Jogging in winter enhances the body’s powers of resistance. Some running magazines state that “Light or moderate running can boost our body’s natural immune system”. The stress is on moderation. By running, your body gets the training to resist cough, cold and other infections.
Read on to know about 15 important tips for running in winters.
1. Set a Goal
Train yourself for a race or a specific goal! It’s so motivating, isn’t it? Try reaching a certain number of miles per month. You will have instant motivation in knowing you’ve got to reach your target mileage. Reward yourself after reaching your goals. Now set another one!
2. Run With a Buddy or Group
Make your workouts safe and social. You will have motivation, a buddy for chatting and be safe in a group. Running with others (or pets) could be a good way to beat the lethargy. If that’s not enough, reward yourself with a fun race destination you like!
Having proper apparel makes all the difference! Layering is a key to avoiding over or under-dressing. Consider wearing a layer that blocks the wind. Wear pants, tights and top that wick the moisture far away from your skin. For the coldest days, wear a mid-layer which fits more loosely (like fleece). It insulates and removes the moisture from your base layer away from your skin.
Your winter running wardrobe must include a running jacket, headband or cap, tights, gloves and a couple of long-sleeve shirts. Your body heat increases as you run. So, you don’t need many layers of clothes in most winter conditions.
4. Dress for 15 to 20° Warmer
Over-dressing is simple to try and do in winter running. Dressing for 15 to 20 degrees warmer will allow your body heat to extend. It reduces the chances of overheating and excessive sweat. You must feel chilled once you walk out the door. If you’re toasty warm, remove a layer. Less is more!
5. Run During Light and Warmer Times of Day
Run during daylight! You can absorb that sunshine we rarely get in winter. Get your miles in during the warmest time of the day. Return with a wide smile on your face!
6. Be Seen
If you run in dark, wear a reflective vest or flashing lights so you’re seen by traffic. In snowy weather, wear bright clothing. Run with identification or a runner’s I.D. in your shoe or pocket—just in case.
7. Hit the Treadmill
When the weather gets bone-chillingly cold, don’t go out. Hit the treadmill. Treadmill running may be a good way to remain fit during unsuitable weather. Through treadmill, you will get in quality miles without risking an injury by slipping on ice!
8. Gear Up
9. Stay Aerobic
10. Stay Low
Shorten your running stride and keep your feet lower to ground. You’ll run more efficiently and reduce the danger of slipping, falling or straining muscles. Choose to run on fresh snow instead of ice or packed snow. You’ll get well traction on fresh snow and reduce the possibility for slipping. Take care and be careful about snow-covered cracks and holes in the road.
11. Take your time To Warm Up
Your body will warm up slowly in winters, especially if you run in the morning. Take a minimum of five minutes to run briskly before you begin to run. It’s going to take 10 to 15 minutes of running before you’re completely warmed up and in your running tempo. Try taking a hot shower to pre-warm your muscles. Put your clothes in the dryer on hot for some time. Now head out for your run!
13. Start into the Wind
Start your run into the wind so you’ve got the wind at your back on your way home. You’ll avoid getting chilled by the wind after you have been sweating.
14. Finish Fast
Finally, keep your run between 30 minutes to an hour. Only experienced professional runners can do it for slightly more time. After 90 minutes, you may start compromising your immune system!!
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