Like cold weather biking, cold weather running requires some additional gear to keep you warm and dry. Here are a few of my favorites that are helping me get through Flying Pig Marathon training miles!

Growing up in Minnesota, where the average winter temperature is 15 degrees I learned how to dress warm. Fast forward to Cincinnati, where the average winter temperature is roughly 35 degrees, and cold weather running takes on a different meaning.

I’m A Freeze Baby

I’m always cold. And I hate it. Remember the picture above? 😛 So, I’m of the opinion that being warm is better than being cold. I’d actually prefer to run in 90 degree, 90% humidity weather over 30 degrees. I’m probably in the minority with that opinion.

Cold Weather Running Gear

That said, I prefer to be warm at the beginning and sweating at the end. The good thing about the extra layers are all the pockets that you can use to stash the gloves, hat, or gaiter that you take off mid-run.

I typically prefer headbands over hats, I’ve had the pink Nike one below for forever and just got a Smartwool one above. If it is snowing, like last weekend, I do like to cover my entire head, with a hat with a ponytail hole. I have a few different pairs of gloves, but haven’t found any that I love and would recommend.

My neck tends to get chilly too, like at the Thanksgiving Day 10K. So, if my shirt/vest doesn’t have a good collar, I’ll layer up with a neck gaiter. The picture above is a prime example of my freeze baby tendency. I’m all bundled up and other runners have lost their gloves, unzipped their jackets, and generally look warm.

Instead of double layers, I typically wear a vest. Even when I had to squeeze some miles in in Minnesota last year, I was comfortable with a thicker shirt and a running vest. For those in-between temperatures (think 35-45), I will throw on this Heat Pullover. It keeps your neck warm and has a pullover mitten.

Heading a bit south, Fleece lined pants are the way to go! I have one pair that I bought 5+ years ago at TJ Maxx that I’ve worn a ton! The elastic is starting to go though, so I just invested in these Toasty Tech Tights from Lululemon. I love all the pockets to carry my phone and nutrition.

Last, but not least, are socks. I love smartwool socks! My mom got me my first pair several years ago and they have held up wonderfully. They do an excellent job of wicking sweat, which keeps your feet warm and dry. This is especially nice when running in slushy, snowy conditions.

Other Resources

Runner’s World also has a great collection of articles on Winter Running. They even have a What To Wear Tool to help you figure out exactly what to wear based on several factors.

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