Before you head out, check out your weather app. If it's below freezing, take it a step further and check out the National Weather Service Wind Chill Chart. This chart creates a formula for calculating the dangers of winter winds and freezing temperatures. For example, in 0-degree temperatures with 15 miles per hour winds, the real feel is -19 and frostbite can happen in up to 10 minutes.
dress for success
For running in cold weather, you want to dress in layers—particularly wool layers. “Wear merino wool for your base and mid-layers,” says Paul Ronto of RunRepeat. “It’s warm, doesn’t get smelly throughout a hard run, and wicks moisture better than synthetic materials which is crucial on winter runs.” For your top layer, Ronto recommends something with a Durable Water Laminate coating or laminate that’s weather resistant. Avoid Gore-tex since it’s not breathable, causing you to sweat more and get chilled. However, wear Gore-tex on your feet if running in snow or wet conditions.
What to wear running in 40-50 degrees:
A lightweight top layered over a short-sleeved base layer tank. Lightweight tights, capris, or shorts.
What to wear running in 30-40 degrees:
A light base layer with a vest or a mid-layer top, tights, hat, and thin gloves.
What to wear running in 20-30 degrees:
Thermal or warm running tights, with a base layer and top layer, plus a warm hat, mittens, and thermal socks.
What to wear running in 10-20 degrees:
Base layer, mid-layer long sleeve shirt, windbreaker, vest, or running jacket, fleece-lined tights or tights with nylon pants over, plus a buff or scarf, wool hat, warm mittens, and longer thermal socks.
What to running wear in 0-10 degrees:
Base layer, mid-layer thick long sleeve shirt, windbreaker, vest, or running jacket, fleece-lined tights or tights with nylon pants over, plus a buff or scarf, wool hat, warm mittens, and longer thermal socks.
What to wear running in sub-zero temp:
You can run, but do you really want to? Find a treadmill instead! But seriously, if you must, wear the same as single digits.
why does it hurt when i breathe in?
Cold dry air can irritate the respiratory passages leading to discomfort, explains Amie Dworecki, a Chicago-based running coach. “An easy way to avoid this is to wrap a scarf around your nose and mouth, or use a buff or neoprene face mask,” she explains. “This will warm and humidify the air as you breathe it in.” If you have difficulty breathing or wheezing, check with your doctor as you may have exercise-induced asthma.