The arrival of winter and cold (or even very cold) temperatures can strongly impact your training sessions. However, it is still essential to keep training in winter in order to prepare your body for more intense races you will be able to do in spring. So keep running in winter but make some adjustments to your running habits. Discover here our 6 tips for running in winter.
1. In winter, forget your timer!
In winter, there's no need to time yourself during your trainings. Indeed, the conditions are no longer the same (wind, cold, frozen ground...), so you won't be able to test yourself on a course you did in summer. Don't worry if you are a little less performant or slower in winter, it's quite normal. Rather rely on your heart rate and listen to your body. Don't take any risks and have fun, your winter efforts remain fundamental for your next runs in the spring.
2. In winter, you need good shoes!
Proper footwear is very important in winter. Indeed, having good shoes allows you to avoid slipping on ice, to stick well on the snow, to keep your feet warm, but also to avoid getting your feet wet! In winter, choose trail shoes over road shoes. They will be safer when you're running, as they are more cramped. For your outings in the mountains or on icy ground, there are also removable crampons. These should be used in moderation, they are destabilizing and modify the stride.
3. In winter, wear appropriate clothes!
Know that in winter, your body warmed by your clothing will give you a feeling of 15 to 20 degrees warmer than the outside temperature. For example, a temperature of -10°C could feel as low as 10°C! So dress accordingly:
Opt for a first insulating layer underneath to conserve your body heat, with a warm sweater (or even two in very cold weather!). Add a light windcheater, ideally waterproof and breathable jacket that will protect you from the wind. The layering of clothing will allow you to remove certain layers if necessary. Avoid overlapping more than 3 layers of clothing. Thus, in case of very cold temperatures, replace the windcheater with a thicker one.
4. In winter, you are visible at all times.
As you know, in winter, we have very little sunlight. The days being very short, if you have to train very early or at nightfall, make sure you are visible to everyone to avoid any incident. Wear flashy colors to increase your visibility. Also think about accessories such as headlamps, lights or braces to increase your visibility in the dark.
5. In winter, warm up indoors.
In winter, before going outside, warm up indoors to be in optimal conditions for your outdoor training. This warm-up may include some stretching, jumping rope, or climbing stairs to prepare your body for the effort.
Bonus - In winter, hydrate and eat!
In winter, with the cold temperatures, we don't necessarily feel the need or desire to drink water during our runs. However, it has been proven that running for more than an hour requires optimal hydration. A little tip for the winter, if you don’t want your bottle to freeze, use a small isothermal pocket or put your bottle in your coat. It is also important to eat even during cold weather! If you didn't know it, Näak bars don't freeze, even at very low temperatures, making them the perfect snack for your winter runs!
If you need more advice about your nutrition during winter, click here to see our 5 winter nutrition tips! Now that you know everything for a good winter session, you are ready to train in winter and take the necessary precautions!