I get it. The weather’s been fantastic—sunny, warm, melting snow everywhere. It’s almost deceiving, as though spring might be just around the corner. It’s true, the groundhog predicted it…but this IS Alberta.
That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t trade in your indoor shoes for those brand new kicks you got for Christmas…erm, or was that just me? It just means there are a few extra safety precautions to think about.
So, with the temperatures hovering just below or above zero for the next few days, I thought I’d share some running wisdom, as passed on to me from my coach.
- Don’t run alone. I know, I know. I like the peace and quiet too, or the sound of music pumping through my headphones. But there’s still ice out there, and if you slip and hurt yourself—well, you want to make sure there’s someone there to help you.
- Speaking of slipping, shorten your strides and keep your feet low to the ground. That’s the best way to avoid an accident if you hit an icy patch. It’s also easier on your muscles if you’re just getting back on the program.
- Dress for the weather. Sounds silly, but even though it looks warm out there, you should still layer up—think about windbreakers, hoodies or running jackets that wick moisture – ideal, which is why one of these is on my birthday wish list- for instance.
- Don’t forget your water bottle. It’s easy to forget to hydrate when you’re running in cooler temperatures, but it’s just as important. Not sure what can happen if you drink too much—or too little—water? Check out the Superman Duffy comic, TRANSPIRATION!
- Be seen. Even if you’re heading out at first light, you should wear reflective gear or a flashing vest. You want cars to see you.
I know it sounds like a lot, but it’s worth it. Running at this time of year means you won’t overheat like in the middle of summer, and the paths are quiet. Of course, if the temperature takes a turn for the worse (like I said, this IS Alberta), you can continue your training in an indoor facility. Spring will come soon enough!
Gotta jet! Be safe out there.
— Chase Superman Duffy