Spring might be just around the corner, but it certainly doesn’t feel like it – especially with parts of the UK set to feel colder than areas in the Arctic circle this week! I’ve been thinking about what I can do to stay motivated to get out running when the weather is so icy cold, so here are my five top tips for making the most of winter running…
Winter is the perfect time to find yourself some running buddies. When the weather is nasty, it’s much easier to get yourself out the front door if you know you’re going to meet friends. The collective accountability of arranging to run together will make sure you all keep up with your training. Joining a running club is also a good idea, especially in the winter. It’s great to feel safe running in a group on cold, dark evenings.
If you’re lacking motivation during the winter months, entering a race could help. Spring races mean winter training. The structure of a training plan will help make you lace up your trainers, even when you’re not really feeling like it.
Is it time to try something different? If you’re normally a road runner, winter is a great time to hit the trails. Have fun with it – kick up leaves, splash through puddles, forget about times and just enjoy.
You could mix your training up and throw in some speed work. Perhaps try a track session? Improving your form and speed over the winter months will see you smashing those PBs come spring time.
Another tactic many runners try this time of year is streaking. Don’t panic – I’m not advocating nudity (it’s far too cold for that!). Running every day can be hugely motivational when your running mojo has up and left. You could aim to run at least one mile every day for a month and see where that takes you.
Your enjoyment of winter running can be hugely influenced by the kit you wear. Removable layers are great, as you can control your temperature. Buy technical fabrics that dry quickly and wick sweat away from your skin, helping you to stay warm. You’ll also need a decent waterproof jacket, gloves and a hat.
I’m not personally a huge fan of treadmill running, but lots of women in the Run Mummy Run community find it the only way they can continue to run during the winter. If you decide a treadmill is the answer, try to keep your runs varied – hill programmes and intervals are good options.