This is a guest post from Brett Bannister.
When it comes to exercise people’s preferences have altered recently, moving away from sports that take place in uninspiring fitness studios and indoor pools, and instead turning to more sensory and stimulating environments. This is why running outdoors has gained popularity.
Having some decent sports clothes, a good pair of running trainers, and a positive mental attitude is vital. But, another important factor, often overlooked at this type of year, is your safety.
So, here are some helpful tips for running outdoors in the colder months.
Mel adds: these tips will be useful for any outdoors activity you love to do, not just running.
1. Get Some High Viz Clothing
The winter sun sets before the majority of people leave work, so it’s highly likely that you’ll be running in the dark at times during these months.
It’s important to make yourself easy to spot for other road users to avoid nasty accidents.
Some running clothing contains reflective parts, but high viz clothing really is a must if you want to be seen clearly.
As well as having an LED sleeve light, Saucony’s Epic Run Jacket provides great visibility in low-light running conditions to ensure you are all set for your journey.
2. Stay Out of Harm’s Way
By running solo in the dark you put yourself at higher risk of a personal attack, so always try to run with a buddy.
It is also important to tell someone when and where you are running, stay in well-lit areas, and vary your routes, whilst avoiding deserted places.
Also, don’t forget to take some money and a mobile phone just in case you need to be picked up, or take a bus home.
3. Keep Warm and Dry
Layer your running clothes, so that you can begin your run fully clothed and remove items as you go, to minimize sweating and loss of vital body heat.
You’ll be surprised just how quickly your body heats up, so if you’re leaving the house toasty warm, you’ve probably gone a bit too heavy on the layers – it’s best to start off feeling a little chilly.
A good place to start is with some compression clothing like the Skins Sport Lady range. Professional sports people everywhere, from footballers to athletes, are wearing it.
Running gear specialist Brett Bannister, from SportsShoes.com, says:
To motivate yourself that little bit extra in Winter make sure you get this right. The hardest bit is leaving your warm and toasty indoor environment, but once you’ve done it, you’ll never come back feeling worse.
Mel adds: I talked about getting motivated to workout recently in my article, 7 Steps to a Regular Exercise Routine.
4. Avoid Smelly Kit
Winter running often results in damp kit from the rain. So, extra attention should be paid to your trainers so that a) they don’t smell revolting, b) they last longer, and c) you avoid getting a cold.
There are three things you can do to avoid each of these from happening:
- If possible, remove your trainer insoles for airing to reduce smells which they may be harboring, and wipe the damp running shoes clean with a cloth.
- Stuff your shoes with newspaper as this soaks any excess moisture from inside the shoe, and then can be thrown away – simple!
- Opt for proper running socks as these wick sweat away from your feet, keeping them warm inside the shoe.
5. Clear Your Head
It is not often we get time to ourselves, away from household chores or a computer screen, so use this opportunity to clear your head from the daily grind, and reflect instead.
You could listen to some favourite songs on your iPod, think about some great past holidays you went on, or swap funny stories with your running buddy.
Although running in the winter can be rejuvenating, it is paramount that you are conscious of your safety. Be visible, tell somebody where you are going, stay warm and dry, and enjoy yourself.
Mel adds: Why not visit SportsShoes.com to check out their great range of workout clothing and shoes?