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Becoming a Cold Weather Runner

10/27/2020 - Staff Writer - Running

Fall into a New Routine

For the northern parts of the United States, there are four seasons. The appropriately named fall season signifies the changing colors of leaves and falling of leaves from the trees. Leaves are not the only thing falling. The temperatures fall, the daylight hours fall, and, quite often, motivation to get moving or active outside also falls.

If you are an active person, perhaps thoughts of moving indoors to the treadmill take over as a means of keeping out of harsher elements. Don’t be so hasty to hibernate or limit activity to the indoors. Cold weather is great for running, even if you are a beginner.

From a stress on the body point of view, the body actually experiences less heat stress in cooler weather, which makes it easier to run. The body’s heart rate and hydration levels are also lower in the cold weather than in warmer conditions - again, areas of the body that will experience a bit less stress due to the weather conditions.  

All of this great news about less stress on the body should not take away from drinking water and staying hydrated. The outdoor run will warm up the body and cause sweat fairly quickly. And, of course, a pre-run warm-up routine is especially important when going out into the colder weather. A good all-body warm-up - jumping jacks, lunges and some good arm circles - will get the blood pumping to the muscles and protect them from strain.

Boost the Immune System

Activity is key to getting immune cells to circulate. Running will get these cells moving and that circulation will continue two or three hours after the run. Therefore, the cold weather run is going to have lasting positive effects. The immune cells offer more than a bit of prevention - the benefits include warding off viruses, bolstering overall health and keeping the entire immune system functioning.

Be Patient and Power On

Cold weather running can be challenging and a bit frustrating, especially for the first time runner. Getting motivated to take up an activity is a tough task. When you decide to follow through and take your run outdoors, everyone driving by or seeing you groove by their house will marvel over your strength and commitment. Consider it a superpower - very empowering and uplifting - leading to a great sense of accomplishment that will also greatly benefit your health.

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