Friday, November 22, 2013


Run this Town

What's your favorite form of cardio?  I do most of mine outdoors.  When the days start to get darker and the weather colder, I always panic.  I fear cabin fever so much that I overcompensate every fall.  If there aren't tornado sirens sounding or Level 3 snow emergencies issued, I will find time and a reason to get outside.  Because of this 'overcompensating cardio plan'  I usually end up doing twice as much cardio in the colder months than I do in the Summer.  I love the brisk fresh air and cold flushed cheeks you get from running when it's chilly outside.  Outdoor cardio is mentally therapeutic and helps prevent the winter bulk up.  You just need the right equipment.

Here are the basics that I recommend:

1) A warm running coat:

I have 2 that I go to, depending on how cold it is.  I use my North Face parka when it's really cold:

This coat will keep you so toasty warm.  It's like running in a sleeping bag.  It's a little bulky, but if you aren't going for speed, it's perfect!  Also great for hikes and long walks.

If the temp is above freezing and you want something you can move around in more freely, I absolutely love Nike ACG Jackets.  They are so hard to find now.  They may have stopped making them.  But I did see a few on Amazon.  You could also go with any neoprene jacket.  I love this one from Roxy.

2) A hat or ear warmers:  

You don't need to splurge on this one.   I have a fun, feathery one that I received as a gift from Nordstrom:
(That's my dad.  He's awesome.)

 But I also have a bin in by coat closet with a pile of cheap ones that I got on clearance at the end of the season from Target.  I think they were a few bucks each and I stocked up because I tend to misplace things.  Plus, my kids wear them when they play in the snow, so you can really never have too many.

3) Thin gloves that are well insulated:
Any thermal pair will do.  I like this Nike pair.  You can get these at LeftLaneSports.com for $10.95.  Keeping the hands warm while running allows better bloodflow to the heart, lungs and legs.

4) Supportive socks:

Everyone's feet are so unique that it is difficult to recommend a specific sock.  I will say, I hate spending a lot on socks.  They really aren't fun to buy.  I used to get mine exclusively form TJ Maxx.  I was given a nice pair from a sport specific store, and WHOA! life changer.  Apparently, good socks matter.  With that being said, you may want to try a few different brands to see what works best for you.  I find that Under Armour has a good, high quality, selection.

5) A base layer:

When it's really cold out a base layer or compression layer is imperative.  It's protects your muscles from strains and tears and keeps your heart lungs cozy.  I set I usually wear is from Athleta (check out all of the other cute warm weather stuff while you're there).  Under Armour is probably the most popular brand and Lululemon has plenty to choose from.

6) Running shoes:

Your feet are really being put to the test while running in the cold.  Be a friend and treat them with some respect.  I strongly recommend getting fitted by someone who knows what they are talking about.  My favorite shoes to run in are Mizunos.  I'm currently running in the Wave Prophecy 3:

You can get these at most athletic shoe stores.  These are from Dick's Sporting Goods.  Wearing proper shoes (and properly fitted shoes) not only protects your feet, but also helps support and protects your ankles, knees, hips and lower back.  Your whole body works together as an intricate system.  Be particular in how you treat it.

If you are ready to get out there and move but you are missing some items on this list, don't let that be an excuse to hold you back.  You can always make do by layering t-shirts and digging old skull caps out of the closet.  These might be some good items to put on your Holiday list.  Or if you know a runner, great gift ideas.  You can never have too many head warmers and running socks!

Okay, time to run! Let me know if you need a running partner :)

Do you have favorite gear that you want to rave about?  Please share!

P.S. Don't forget to warm up, cool down and stretch after :)


  1. Won't I trip in the big parka jacket? It looks like it goes down to my ankles! Ack!!!!!

    1. You know, I run in mine all the time and don't have a problem, but I'm never really going for speed. If I were training for speed something shorter would perform much better. I should note, I run for heart health, exercise and fun, so I'm happy in a toasty warm parka at a jogging pace.

  2. Yolanda, I think you're missing something important - the head and face! I usually wear a knit cap, but on really cold days I couldn't run without my PolarTec Balaclava!

  3. Thanks, Brett!! You are so right. When it's really cold protecting the face is vital!! Great additions. Thanks for reading.