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January 3, 2013 / fionarwbl

Brrr!! Winter Running Essentials

Brrrr, it’s cold out! I went for a morning run this morning, and followed it up with an hour of wandering around Central Park with my pup. How could I deny this little snow angel?

High speed snow rolling

High speed snow rolling

Anyway, while I was charging up the West Side Highway (Yasso 800s – ended up at an average of 3:41 for each, which was actually pretty ok), I was distracting myself from my rapidly thumping heart and weird rhino like breathing by thinking about what are my winter running must-haves.

For me, there are two key ones, and they both go back to layering. Yes, I treat winter running like Shrek treats onions.

Me in my long sleeve. Note the gray-on-grays. Please do not use this look for high visibility.

Me in my long sleeve. Note the gray-on-grays. Please do not use this look for high visibility.

The first one is my top half. During winter, I will always run with a tight fitting long-sleeve base, on which I’ll put a layer on over, like a running fleece or windproof top. The long sleeve has to be pretty tight and long, ideally with thumbholes. The best one I’ve tried so far is the Lululemon Long Sleeve Swiftly, but this Asics Long Sleeve Top looks promising, as does this top from Gap. I like it long enough to cover at least some of my butt, and tight so that it doesn’t move and I don’t feel a draught or chill anywhere, and with thumbholes to keep it in position while layering a longer top over it. The Lulu one wicks away sweat well so that I’m not damp when I’m sweating, which, actually, I do, even when it’s 20F. If it’s really cold, or I’m going to for a long run, I’ll also layer a tank top under my long sleeve top.

Now I've put all my winter running clothes on. Spot the difference!!

Now I’ve put all my winter running clothes on. Spot the difference!!

The second piece of my layering mix is less common. I get a very chilly butt when I run. No one else complains about this, but I am sure there is someone else out there who suffers from this as well. Every winter I wonder if running with cashmere underwear would be a good idea. Of course it wouldn’t, but I still get butt chills. Therefore, I layer a pair of shorts over my winter tights. Looking cool, no? As you can see, I’m rocking a more gray tone-on-tone look here. I find that when I layer my bright shorts against black or gray tights, it does look like I’m wearing my underwear outside my tights, which is not exactly the look I’m going for.

Can't stop me! I'm ruuuuunnniiingg!! Inside my apartment.

Can’t stop me! I’m ruuuuunnniiingg!! Inside my apartment.

Other awesome winter must haves are wide, fleecy headbands for your ears and touch-screen gloves for tweeting and instragramming without chilling your fingers. Oh, and switching out chocolate milk for mocha coffees after a long run. It’s practically the same, no?

What other advice do you have for winter running? Or do you head inside for the treadmill?

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9 Comments

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  1. Dori / Jan 3 2013 10:51 pm

    My advice is always tuck your base layer into your pants so air doesn’t get in underneath! I also wear a moisture wicking neck warmer since most of my shirts don’t cover my neck. My biggest issue is my face because there’s nothing I can really do about that when I run and it gets SO cold.

    • fionarwbl / Jan 3 2013 10:53 pm

      I was thinking about that today because my cheeks got numb while walking Moose this morning. I see some people wearing those neck warmers right up to their eyes – would that work?

      • Dori / Jan 4 2013 2:34 pm

        I always try, it holds for a minute before it falls right back down!

  2. Emilia @ Run for Your Life / Jan 3 2013 10:56 pm

    Wha, did you forget to include a picture of Moose?! 😉
    I’ve done the shorts over tights look many times. I have some pairs of tights that were definitely not meant to be worn alone, haha.

    • fionarwbl / Jan 3 2013 11:02 pm

      hahaha!!! I’m glad you are covering up. Gotta love those tights that show EVERYTHING.

      And yes, Moose photo was forgotten. Thank you for spotting – emergency upload made!

    • fionarwbl / Jan 3 2013 11:02 pm

      hahaha!!! I’m glad you are covering up. Gotta love those tights that show EVERYTHING.

      And yes, Moose photo was forgotten. Thank you for spotting – emergency upload made!

  3. Jen / Jan 4 2013 8:02 am

    I love the wearing-shorts-over-leggings combo! My butt totally gets chilled so this is brilliant and I’m going to have to try it.

  4. Mandi / Jan 4 2013 8:15 am

    I also end up with a cold but whenever I go for an outdoor run in the winter. But somehow I never considered layering up with a pair of running shorts. Very clever!

  5. Kiersten / Jan 4 2013 6:51 pm

    I get a cold butt too. When i shower after a long cold run, the hot water makes me feel like my butt and thighs are on fire. They turn bright, bright red. But I don’t like how shorts over tights feel, so I just suck it up!

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