Three Winter Safe Training Tips
With the cold season coming up quick, it is important to start planning how to continue training through less than ideal weather conditions. Whether you are battling rain, wind, sleet, or snow to get your training in, the most important thing is to stay safe! Keep the following tips in mind while training in poor weather conditions:
1. Dress for Success
If you are planning to train outside, make sure you have enough layers to stay warm while you are training. It may seem counter-intuitive to put more clothing on when you will be working up a sweat, but your body will be working extra hard to maintain a comfortable temperature in cold weather conditions. Wearing leggings, compression socks, long sleeve shirts, gloves, headbands or hats that cover your ears, and layers in general will help keep you warm. As it starts to get darker earlier, make sure to wear reflective gear so cars can see you.
2. Embrace the Mill (& other forms of aerobic exercise)
Check the weather before you train outside. If the weather is unsafe to train in, choose an indoor training option. If you were planning a 12 mile run, try breaking it up into two 6 mile runs, one run in the morning and the second 6-8 hours later. This helps make long runs on the treadmill a little more bearable. If you don’t enjoy running on the treadmill diversifying the modes can be a great way to train for longer periods of time. For example, let’s say it takes you 2 hours to run 12 miles. You could break it up into 20-30 minute legs and alternate between the modes — running for 20-30 minutes and cycling for 30 minutes for 2 hours.
3. Warm All The Way Up & Properly Cool Down!
In cold weather it can take a little longer for your muscle to be ready to train. Make sure to increase your warm up time to give your muscles the chance to fully warm up. Utilizing form work drills, foam rolling, dynamic stretching, and static stretching are all beneficial in their own ways for a proper warm up and a cool down. While foam rolling and both dynamic and static stretching will not “loosen fascia” or elongate muscles and tendons they do help prepare you for your workout by wakening and resetting the nervous system, which may actually improve neurologic control during your workout. After your workout it is important to do a proper cool down to aid your muscles in recovery!
It’s great that you have already started training! Keep in mind that all the hard work you are putting in now will pay off come race day!
If you are interested in learning more about the roll of stretching, dynamic warm up, mobility, stability, how they affect your body before and during a run and more about running in general check out Running Rewired and Anatomy for Runners both by author Jay Dicharry.
~Sierra, The Tunnel Marathons Trainer