Summer bodies are made in winter, states the old exercise adage, but even the most avid runners will admit to sometimes rather wanting to snuggle back into the blankets on particularly frosty mornings, or rather opting to have a hearty, early winter supper than heading out on a late afternoon run.
While the crisp weather does sometimes put a damper on our motivation to get out there and run, there are ways to combat the cold and get excited about running.
Here are five quick tips that’ll motivate you to put on your running shoes and take a brisk winter jog.
Set a goal for springtime
Few things are more motivational than setting a specific goal to work towards within a certain timeframe. Whether you want to get into a running routine, want to lose weight, get fit, or complete a race, getting to the heart of what you’re aiming for is key to finding the drive to get up and get out.
Make it as comfortable as possible
If the cold is deterring you from going for a run outdoors, there are a number of ways to make it more comfortable for yourself. Layers are the key to staying warm. Start with a base layer and avoid wearing cotton – rather go for moisture wicking fabrics and layers that are easy to remove if you start feeling hot.
If you’d prefer not running outdoors, there’s always the option of hitting the treadmill at the gym, too.
Get a running buddy
Accountability is a great motivator, and setting up regular jogging dates with a running buddy are invaluable in this regard. Aside from the accountability factor, running with a friend brings an extra social element to the party, and is a wonderful way to challenge yourself to do better.
Warm up well
Your body has to work harder to regulate its temperature when you go running in winter, and this can make winter runs feel more strenuous. A proper warm-up routine can help to counter any discomfort, and is key to ensuring you don’t pick up injuries along the way.
Don’t feel guilty about taking a day off when the weather is particularly chilly
Of course, the weather has an immutable influence on running conditions. It’s okay to take a day off from your scheduled running plan if it’s cold or icy on the road. It is better to avoid injuries and illness by giving yourself a breather. If you are feeling under the weather, rather ride out the bug with a steaming mug of chicken soup at home, and head back out when you’re fighting fit.