Cool Runnings: Tips for Winter Training

December 1, 2013 Updated: November 30, 2013

It’s the tried and tested excuse for not squeezing in that run: “It’s way too cold outside!”

This is such a prolific excuse, in fact, that many people have never experienced the joys of running in or after a snowfall. They are all missing out. Brisk, winter runs happen to be some of the most rewarding and mythical of any that you will go on this year.

Here’s a few tips to get those running shoes on and out the door!


This is probably the most important of all. Yeah, it’s going to be a little chilly at first, so wear a couple of layers. Shed them as you warm up and pick them up on your way home! Wearing two thin sweatershirts is better than one bulky one as you can better control your temperature.

As a general rule, dress for 10 degrees to 15 degrees warmer than it is. It’s also a good idea for your outermost layer to be bright or reflective and weatherproof.

Gloves and a Beanie 

What’s the first two places you feel the cold? Your head and your hands. Cover them and you’re well on your way to warmth.

Wear Sunglasses 

Not only will you look the part, but the cold will not affect your vision and any water droplets hanging around won’t ruin your flow. As a general rule, you should aim to cover all exposed skin.


For numerous reasons, many people find it harder to stay hydrated in the winter. Be mindful of this and drink plenty of (non-icy) water.

Eat Warm Carbohydrates 

Eating oatmeal, chili, soup, or pasta, and drinking hot chocolate and cider are all great choices to stay warm and fueled up.


Drag someone along with you. This should increase the level of fun, keep you running a bit longer, and make you more visible than if you were by yourself

Safety First 

This applies to you and your surroundings. Be mindful of cars that might have a little less traction than usual. And, watch your step—running on the fresh snow is better than ice.


If this list hasn’t convinced you yet, maybe you just need a little more of a push. Make a playlist with all of your workout jams on it, and write out a list of all of the benefits and drawbacks of running outside. Chances are, the only drawback is that it’s a bit chilly. But then ask yourself, are you cold, or is it cold outside?

Here are our tips that get us out there in the winter. Do you have any others? Share them below!

Eco18 is a collective of creative-writing individuals from different backgrounds with a common goal—to live a healthier, more natural lifestyle. Their combined expertise, humor, and opinions explore green and sustainable in a practical, fun way.