Practical Tips for Running Outside This Autumn/Winter
As the temperature starts to drop and the days get shorter, many runners are tempted to move their workouts indoors. However, running outside during autumn and winter can still be fun when you’re properly prepared. The crisp air can be surprisingly refreshing and the changing seasons bring with them beautiful landscapes to enjoy.
Whether you're a seasoned runner or a beginner, knowing how to adapt to the change in the weather and prepare for the unique challenges of autumn/winter is essential for a comfortable and safe outdoor workout. Below we have put together some practical tips for running outside during the colder months.
Dress for the Weather
When the temperature drops, you need to replace your summer running apparel with something more appropriate for the wind and rain. Here's how to gear up for the cooler weather;
- Running Jacket - A running jacket is non-negotiable for winter runs. Look for one that offers a combination of wind and water resistance while still being breathable. Lightweight yet insulating options are ideal, and features like zipped pockets and reflective detailing are useful additions.
- Long Sleeve Tops - The key to staying warm is layering and long sleeve tops are the perfect base layer. Make sure you opt for moisture-wicking materials that will keep sweat away from your skin. This helps maintain your body temperature and keeps you warm and dry whilst you’re running.
- Warm Running Tights - Don’t forget about your lower body when you’re running outside this autumn and winter. Replace your running shorts with warm running tights or leggings that are designed for cold weather. These trousers are generally made from synthetic blends that offer both insulation and moisture-wicking benefits.
Purchase Some Winter Accessories
While accessories may seem like optional add-ons, they play a key role in enhancing comfort during winter runs. For instance, a neckwarmer can protect your neck from cold winds and also be pulled up to shield your lower face. Additionally, items like moisture-wicking gloves and thermal running socks provide that extra layer of warmth and protection. Investing in new running gear for this time of the year can provide a more comfortable experience.
Make Sure You’re Visible
Given the shorter daylight hours during the autumn and winter months, there's a good chance you'll be running in the dark. To make sure you’re safe, visibility should be a priority. Incorporate reflective gear into your running attire to make yourself more noticeable to drivers and other pedestrians. Using a headlamp or clip-on lights can be beneficial too, not only enhancing your visibility but illuminating your surroundings.
Pay Attention to Your Footing
Following on from above, when running outside during autumn and winter you need to be careful where you step. The conditions underfoot can vary during these seasons, with the possibility of slippery leaves, frost and even ice patches. As well as using lights, investing in running shoes with excellent grip can reduce some of the risks. You also need to be mindful of your running technique. Shortening your stride and keeping your feet lower to the ground can provide more stability and reduce the likelihood of slips and falls.
Check the Weather Forecast
Before you head out, always check the weather forecast. Look out for not just freezing temperatures but also high winds and snow. These elements can significantly impact your run, so it's better to be prepared and potentially adjust your route accordingly. Being aware of predicted weather changes can also help you decide whether to bring additional gear or postpone your run for safety.
Hydration is just as important in the colder months as it is during the summer. The cold can often mask feelings of thirst, making it easy to forget to drink water. Carrying a hydration pack or planning routes with water points can help you stay hydrated throughout your run. Keeping track of your fluid intake, either manually or through a mobile app, can provide extra assurance that you're staying hydrated.
Preparing for Autumn/Winter Running with The Run Hub
Running outside during autumn and winter requires some additional planning and the right gear, but the crisp air and quiet roads can make it very rewarding. By investing in some high-quality running apparel and accessories, and planning the best routes, you can enjoy a comfortable and safe running experience, no matter the weather.
When searching for somewhere to purchase everything you need for cold weather running, be sure to explore The Run Hub website. We stock the essentials you need all year round and you will recognise many of the brands we supply. If you need some autumn/winter running advice, our team is on hand to help too. Why not pop into one of our running stores in Dublin to discuss all things running with our experts?