Posted on December 25 2017
You've probably heard me talk about how much I love running. Unfortunately, (or fortunately!) I live in the Pacific Northwest. For me, this means that my running season is cut short by a cold winter. There are lots of diehards out there, but I admit I'm not one of them when the weather gets too cold. this doesn't mean that I don't spend winter training for my spring races. In fact, I rather enjoy it. Come January, I start looking for races that are being scheduled and how soon I can get in on one.
Winter training and running does have its own challenges, however. Here are my tips for how to train in the winter for spring races.
Be flexible to the weather- The weather in the winter can be very hard to predict so make sure that you stay flexible in your plans when working out and training for races for the spring. Always have a plan B. That way you will be less likely to skip a workout in case of weather. For me, my plan B is to head to the gym and use the equipment there such as the treadmill. I like to add intensity with speed of the machine as well as incline. There are many settings on a treadmill that allow you to train as if you were outdoors.
Buy the proper equipment for safety on the snow and ice- In addition to buying warm workout gear and dressing in layers, make sure you have equipment that's good for winter weather. This should include wicking material gloves and hats, as well as reflective material (found on many Rainbeau Curves pieces!) and lights to wear on your shoes or body since darkness happens quicker in the winter. You should also consider investing in some slip-on traction gear for your shoes to avoid falling in ice and snow.
Make sure you have a plan to warm up afterwards if you do your training outdoors- Warming up after being outside is vitally important. This is not only for comfort but also for safety. After training, take a warm shower to clean yourself and warm up. Additionally, consider stopping for some hot cocoa or coffee to stay warm on your run or training session.
Try interval training- Interval training involves short bursts of high intensity workout with short bursts of low-intensity or rest periods. When training for races, this might look like 30 seconds of fast and intense running mixed with 1 minute to a minute and a half of walking or jogging. This form of training is great when you are short on time or trying to build your stamina quicker.
Decide what races you will be running and when the season hits- Having a plan for races that you will compete in or participate in, in the springtime, allows you to create goals and give you something to look forward to in the coming warmer weather season. I mean, why would you be training in the first place if you didn't have an idea of what you would be running in? Give yourself some goals to work towards.
Don't worry too much if you must skip a workout due to Weather or time- As with any other time of year, it's alright to skip a session or two of training. Don't try to beat yourself up over it. Skipping a session here and there likely won't have any effect on your stamina.
Consider getting a partner for training- During the winter months it is easy to slack on your training, especially with the busy holiday season. Consider getting a workout buddy so you can motivate each other and have someone to hold you accountable. This would be a great time to get that one friend that's always wanted to do a race involved and ready to go when Spring Race season comes again.
Read more by Christine here.