How to Best Enjoy your Winter Runs

Nov 18, 2022

Top Clothing Tips for your Winter Run

It’s about that time of year again for London, summer is well and truly over, and it is time to trade the shorts and t-shirts for leggings and thermals. This seems like a standard approach to the change in season, but what does that mean when it comes to running or other sports. The questions that arise are ‘’I get hot so i’ll wear my usual clothes’’ or ‘’its cold so ill wear more clothes to keep warm’’ but what is the right answer?

The colder weather does require more layers to maintain body heat in a safe enough temperature to avoid cramps, spasms and early fatigue. A recent study has shown that a three-layer system works best for combating the cold and maintaining performance levels.

  • Layer 1 – the wicking/base layer, the layer closest to the skin which should be made from polypropylene or silk (dry fit).
  • Layer 2 – the insulating layer this can be a fleece this layer should trap air to keep you warm but release enough to prevent overheating.
  • Layer 3 – the windproof waterproof layer this should protect against wind and possible rain which allows heat and moisture to escape.

The combination of the three seems to be the best for staying warm and comfortable during your winter runs. However, there is no fixed rule, and you can increase or reduce the number and combination of layers depending on the distance and intensity of the run and the temperature that day.

Your body temperature rises when exercising so as a rule you can prepare for an extra 10 degrees of heat when going for your run. E.G., 10 degrees outside can feel like 20 when running so it may be best to wear shorts and/or running tights with a long sleeve running top. Any temperature below this you should look to add thermal layers and a weatherproof jacket.

Aside from the choice of clothes. Winters in the UK include daylight saving times so you might find that your running times are a significantly darker than normal. This can bring about a few challenges, the first of which are looking to avoid injuries such as rolled ankles due to the lack of vision on the ground. This is mainly for park and road runners as other surfaces seem to be more consistent i.e., tarmac and athletic tracks. A good way to help avoid this is to add proprioceptive training into your programme. Proprioception is ‘’the bodies ability to understand where it is in space, the sense of balance that depend on the notion of force’’ it allows us complete physical tasks without overthinking them.

There are plenty of options coming through over the coming days on our Instagram channel which will give you ideas to help manage your ankle stability, plus a host of sesisons in our Club Runner membership. Reduce your injury riska nd build your foundation strength for running at Stability Exercise Series

A study in the American Journal of Sports Medicine found that a training programme that included proprioception reduced the risk of sprains in athletes.

So, to conclude the best way to prepare for your running in the coming winter months are to dress appropriately by accepting your body temperature will rise once you get moving so make sure you have your layers to mix and match from. And also make sure to include proprioception into your training programme to avoid unnecessary sprains and strains when running in the dark.

Keep Building Your Running Foundation this Winter