Cold Weather Training: 6 Tips for Running in the Fall & Winter

winter running

We recently wrote about Fall fitness tips to help you keep pumped and active all season long. But today, let’s take it a step further with specific tips for all you runners/joggers out there!

If you’re planning to stay on schedule with your running as the weather’s getting cold, there are some extra things to keep in mind. Race season may be months away, but keeping up with your running goals now will help you pick up your training right where you left off once the weather warms up.

Here’s how to stay focused:

  1. Set a Goal: Set specific goals for how much you want to run each week to keep yourself motivated. Be sure to log your miles as you go too, so that you can see how you progress over time. If you’re regularly hitting or missing your goal, be sure to readjust for the following week. Goals should fluctuate based on your schedule and energy level each week, so make sure it’s not a “set in stone” type of thing.
  2. Join a Gym: Some runners aren’t fans of treadmills, but they have their uses. When the weather is cold and you aren’t ready to ditch your shorts, they can be critical. They can also come in handy if you’re looking to work on your pace or do interval training. Pop in those earbuds and go!
  3. Increase Your Warm-Up Time: It’s cold out—your body is cold and your muscles are tight. So it makes sense that it takes longer to get warmed up. Take a brisk walk or a slow jog for 5-10 minutes before heading out on your regular workout. And consider a longer stretching or activity recovery session before and after your workout. Your muscles and joints will thank you.
  4. Don’t Add Too Many Layers: You’ll of course want to layer up for your workouts in the cold. But remember that things will heat up rather quickly. Aim for enough layers that you’re comfortable but still slightly chilly at the start, and on especially cold days, make sure you have all the cold-weather gear you’ll need. Having the ability to de-layer is also key, so light clothing that you can stuff in your pocket or roll up if it has to come off is a plus.
  5. Sign Up For Your Next Race: Even if race season seems far away, there are plenty of reasons to get in early with registration. Many events have early discounts, but having something you’ve already committed to will also help keep you engaged all year long. That concept of a goal or carrot can be so motivating. We can’t stress that enough.
  6. Find Your Motivation: We talk a lot at Fitbit about how to stay motivated, but only because it’s so important. Whether finding the right running song or scoring the perfect running buddy to hold you accountable, your goal is to find out what helps you create — and stick to — your goals.

So stay safe and stay warm this season, runners, and don’t forget to cheer or taunt your fellow Fitbit friends to keep them motivated too!

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