Avoiding a winter running hiatus

It’s not cold yet, but it will definitely get cold. Or whatever my southern version of “cold” is. Typically, I take this time of year to rest and rejuvinate, ready to emerge during the new year with new goals and new plans in mind. Not this year.

This year, there’s no running/exercise hiatus for me. I’m going to stick it out in the cold. That’s the plan, anyway. I’m well-equipped with heat gear, a pair of great running shoes, some even hotter tunes, and motivation. I want to run the Gasparilla Distance Classic 15k in March 2012. I’ve run it before. It’s a great race. Completely flat with a turn-around course and mild weather. It’s my last step before even attempting to train for a half marathon. And I have to train throughout the winter to accomplish it.

So about that. I hate hate hate hate running in the cold. I hate the feeling of gulping down freezing cold air into my lungs. I hate the feeling of being cold and sweating. I hate the red, runny nose I get when I run outside. And I REALLY hate not feeling like I got a workout because I’m not sweating the buckets I normally do in other seasons. I feel like I’m slower, less-productive, and fighting harder in the cold. That’s probably not the case, but I sure feels like it. So I’ve always avoided it.

This year, I’ve conjured up a plan. Combining short runs outside in the warmest part of the day (layered up, obviously) with longer, harder runs on the treadmill in the gym will help me productively train for the Gasparilla and stay in better shape while I eat my way through the holidays than I would if I wasn’t working out. I’m pretty excited to see how it turns out! I will definitely make sure to keep you guys updated.

Got any tips for running outside in the cold? Let me know, please!


Showoff. (Photo by Dan Bennett)

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