Running in cold weather


Tuesday is my scheduled running day and I thought several times about postponing it to Wednesday after seeing in the weather forecast that it was going to be -2 degrees Celsius. I love running outdoors and autumn is usually not too hot like summer is but also not too cold like winter so it’s the perfect time for outdoor running.

Nevertheless it’s middle of November and the temperature is dropping more and more every day and it looks like the winter cold is coming sooner than expected and, perhaps I speak only for myself here, but also sooner than hoped. Don’t get me wrong, I love winter, especially when it’s snowing, but I definitely enjoy it only when I am inside in our comfortable warm home with a nice hot cup of cocoa in my hand or outside nordic skiing with proper warm clothing. During the cold times I try to be careful not to get sick or catch a cold generally and running outside in -2 degrees is pretty risky.

I’ve recently heard on the Get Up & Code Podcast that last minute changes in workout schedules should be avoided for better results, plus on Wednesday it’s going to rain apparently so it’s not like it would’ve been better to postpone the workout anyhow, so I decided to go running on Tuesday morning as planned but also made sure to dress warm based on The 3-Layer Principle:

  • Multifunctional underwear like the 1st layer by McKinley
  • Winter running tights
  • Knee-high compression socks
  • Winter running shirt
  • Waterproof and wind-resistant softshell jacket
  • Running vest
  • Multifunctional Buff
  • Gloves
  • Cappy

(For rainy weather I have additional water-resistant jacket and pants as well.)

This combination is definitely a winner. I ran 5 kms and did not feel the cold at all. I even managed to improve the Personal best time for 5 km by 2m:17s.

Breathing in the cold air is refreshing but it can be sometimes bad for the lungs, I usually pull the multifunctional Buff over my mouth and nose if it is too cold to warm up the air going in and out during breathing.

On a side note, the gloves I bought a week ago don’t work with my iPhone, the finger gestures are not recognized so I have to take one glove off every time I have to use my phone. Annoying!

I am starting Week 11 of 20 of the Endomondo C25K running plan and I definitely feel how much the difficulty level is being raised at every workout. It usually takes 24 hours for the soreness to kick in but I had sore muscles already within a few hours after running today.

I will wear the compression socks whole evening and night, hoping that by tomorrow morning the soreness will go away so that I can finally walk normally again and, if all goes well, be ready for the next run on Thursday.