Unstoppable: running in winter

November 12, 2012

By Jessica Starkey

Photography courtesy of The North Face

November is the ultimate month of “lazy”. The glory of autumn begins the dreary transition of not-quite-winter that will have you reaching for your slippers and blanket much faster than the gym bag and trainers.

While those covers may look cozy, your body is actually screaming for exercise. Why? Well, what better way to beat those November blahs than by pumping your body with endorphins?

While the obvious option may be to hit the gym, there are those among us who would rather cut off an arm than step into that well-intentioned atmosphere. Therefore, one option is to simply put on the trainers (and a few layers), and hop out of the door for a brisk jog or walk. Not only will you get some exercise but a healthy dose of fresh air and, if you’re lucky, much-needed vitamin D.

Despite the fact that Canadians willingly embrace our near-arctic temperatures to engage in some of winter’s best sports – be it skiing and snowboarding, snowshoeing or a classic game of pond hockey – many scoff at the idea of running outside.

However, winter running isn’t really all that different than any of the other “traditional” winter sports. It’s perfectly safe so long as you layer up and dress for the occasion. Here are some suggestions.

Layer 1: Base layer

This is the layer that rests against your skin; it’s important to wear clothing that wicks away moisture to prevent the cold from setting in. For example, The North Face GTD Long Sleeve Top features their brand new Flash Dry technology. The nano-technology particles embedded in the fabric ensure no moisture stays on your clothing, keeping you dry and warm.

GTD Long Sleeve Top.

Layer 2: Insulation

For those very cold days, it helps to get a little extra heat to keep you warm. An insulating layer allows the heat to stay in your core, keeping you outside for those extra few miles you want to push out. Try The North Face TKA 80 Hybrid ½ Zip: this light fleece top will give some added warmth at minimal weight. The body-mapped technology lets you breathe where your body needs it the most.

TKA 80 Hybrid ½ Zip.

Layer 3: Waterproof/windproof jacket

November equals rain, sleet, snow and sometimes all three. Don’t let the weather deter you from getting a good workout, toss on a waterproof and windproof jacket to lock in the warmth and keep you dry at the same time.

Last but not least, it’s best to think about a light pair of gloves and a hat as well, especially if your jacket doesn’t have a hood.

Running in the wintertime doesn’t have to be complicated; you just need to take the same approach as you would to any other outdoor winter activity. And just think: when running in November, you’ll never have to worry about heat stroke. Unless, of course, you’re on vacation in the Caribbean.


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