Sponsor Content

10 Things You Need to Know About Running Outdoors During the Winter

Photo credit: iStock/Halfpoint

Photo credit: iStock/Halfpoint

Whether you’re bored with the gym or you were lucky enough to nab a bib during the Blue Cross Broad Street Run lottery, it’s time to take your training outdoors again. Just be sure that you’re smart about how you adapt your workout for winter’s chill. To get you started, here are 10 tips for a safe, satisfying outdoor run. 

1. Layer up. Warm clothing, of course, is important, but layers can go even further. Each layer you add is another barrier for heat loss.

2. Don’t forget your fingers, toes, nose, cheeks, and head. Heat is often lost through the hands, feet and head. Be sure to wear socks, gloves, a scarf and a hat or headband. Purchase these items in moisture-wicking performance fabric to avoid chafing and cold, sweaty feet or hands.

3. Check for ice. Don’t risk slipping on ice (or worse, black ice) while running. Consider the previous day’s forecast before hitting the pavement. And if a run isn’t in the cards, embrace the chill and try ice skating at Blue Cross RiverRink. (It burns the same amount of calories as the elliptical!)

4. Wear sunblock. Just because it’s winter doesn’t mean the sun won’t be out. Protect your skin from the rays by slathering on some sport-friendly SPF.

5. Start your workout in the afternoon when temperatures are at their peak.

6. Thoroughly stretch and warm up. If you’re used to limbering up pre-run right on the trail, think about doing your stretches indoors instead. The warmer temperatures will allow you to more fully stretch, thus protecting you from potential injury. Plus, it minimizes time spent in the cold.

7. Run toward the wind. You can thank Runner’s World for this handy tip. Running toward the wind in the beginning length of your run will ensure the wind is at your back during the final length. Then, any sweat on your face isn’t susceptible to the added wind chill.

8. Hydrate. Similar to #4, it’s still important to remain hydrated during a winter run. In fact, it might be even more important because you won’t have the heat to signal a water break.

9. Revise your workout if need be. With the added layers and modified routine, there’s no shame in shortening a workout when necessary.

10. Be smart! No training session is worth hypothermia or frostbite. If it’s simply too cold or slippery outside, try one of these eight YouTube workouts at home.

Get more information on how Independence Blue Cross can be a part of your plan for health and wellness.

Sponsor content is created for IBX by Philadelphia magazine as a marketing collaboration with IBX. This material is intended for reference and information only and should not be used in place of advice from a doctor or suitable qualified healthcare professionals.