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How to Run in Cold Weather

Learn how to run in cold weather from competitive runners Doug Oldiges and Stephanie Coburn in this Howcast video.


Cold weather tends to send people indoors, but it doesn't have to be a reason for you to sideline your training plan. There's a lot of clothes available today to keep you warm, keep you dry, so that you can continue on your run.

Starting from the feet up, running shoes tend to be very breathable so you're gonna want a good, thick sock. There's a lot of natural fabrics available today, like wool. Wool, because it's a natural fabric will keep your feet warm during the wintertime, and they're also great during the summertime because they'll keep your feet cool. So they'll pull the moisture away from your feet, keep your feet dry, keep your feet warm in the wintertime.

Working up, if you tend to run cold as we call it, if you tend to be very cold when you run, you're gonna want to wear Dry-Fit pants or tights. The Dry-Fit again, is gonna keep your body warm, keep your body dry, pull that sweat away and if they have a wind resistant cover on them, they're gonna keep the wind away and keep your legs warm. So if you tend to get really cold, you can actually wear two pairs of pants. The tight will help to keep the warmth close to your body. You can wear a loose fitting pant to help keep the wind away from your legs.

On top, on your torso, you're gonna want about three layers if you tend to run cold. You're gonna want a base layer. The base layer is gonna fit snugly against your body. That's going to be the layer that pulls the sweat and the moisture away from your body. The second layer is gonna be your insulating layer. It's gonna be a little thicker, it's gonna help to keep the warmth close to your body. The third layer is the shell or the outer layer. You're gonna want a wind resistant or even a water resistant layer if it's snowing, maybe if it's a light rain but it's very cold outside.

Depending on how cold or how warm your hands get while you're running, you might just want a thin glove because your hands will actually start to sweat and warm up quicker than you think. But also you can get a nice glove or a nice mitten. Mittens tend to hold your fingers together, so your fingers will actually help to keep each other warm. So what you can do, you can get a mitten layer underneath and you can get a windbreaker shell on top. You can do it two ways. You can get a glove bottom and a shell mitten that goes over the top, or you can get a double mitten which will actually keep your hands really warm.

Make sure you're keeping your head warm as well. Some people tend to get really warm on their heads. Maybe you just need an ear warmer to keep your ears warm, but you want to be really careful about your earlobes and keep those warm. You can wear a hat that will cover your ears, or you can just wear an ear warmer that will come over your ears. If it gets really cold, you might want to think about getting a neck warmer that will this area of your neck warm as well so that everything is covered.

So depending on where you live, just be careful of where you're footing. If you're gonna go out when it's cold out, there could be some ice, there could be some snow. If you're not really sure about your footing, take smaller steps which can help you from slipping and falling.

And those are some tips that will help keep you running throughout the cold weather.

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