How Do You Do That? Winter Running

I’ve been asked numerous times to talk about what I wear while running outside in the winter.

I’ve done three races this winter. A December 5k, a January 10k, and a February 5k, and next weekend I have the Get Lucky 7k! So I finally feel that I’ve had enough experience to share my top 3 tips.

#1 Winter Running Tip Head And Hands

Your head and your hands are the most important to cover. I love my Lululemon winter headband, although I recently have seen winter hats with a slit in the back to allow for ponytails. And the gloves pictured were purchased at Costco this winter. I love the tech fingers because they work with my Garmin, and I also love that they aren’t fleece lined, they  keep me warm without overheating. Now that the weather is starting to get warmer I usually run in Target brand gloves (the cheap kind) which they now make with tech fingers!

#2 Winter Running Tip: Layer Your Core

Layering your core is also important. I wear Target brand (C9) sports bras, but the picture above shows my 4 favorite tops to include on a winter run. The Nike Hyperwarm has fleece on the inside which is awesome! But if its a sunny day, you’ll probably sweat more, in which case I would recommend having your base layer be a merino wool top similar to the one I have from Costco, it will wick the sweat off of you. The Nike Element Thermal is my favorite sweatshirt, this is still available on, but tends to come and go quickly, so it get while it is on sale, or you’ll be waiting for next winter, and paying full price! Finally, the North Face vest is something I start adding on the coldest/windiest runs. Its not great if you want speed, but if you’re going to be outside for a while the pockets are awesome and it keeps you super warm!

I’m not really particular about what I wear on my legs, I usually wear a merino wool long underwear and a pair of Underarmour tights for the coldest days. But if I’m looking for less bulk and more speed I have a pair of Nike running tights. If anyone knows of a decently priced pair of fleece lined leggings, please send the recommendation to me!

#3 Winter Running Tip: Buddy Up


While I only have a few friends crazy enough to also enjoy winter running, we aren’t able to get together every weekend for runs. Its important if you aren’t running with someone else to make sure someone knows where you are running, and how long you expect to be out. You should have an agreed upon time in which they should come looking for you. This is true on runs any time of year, but I feel especially important in the winter!

There are plenty of extra things you can also incorporate into winter running. I usually have a neck warmer on, however I usually remove it after 20-30 minutes of running. The general rule is to look at the temp outside, and add 15 degrees then dress accordingly. So if its 30 outside, I would dress as if its 45.

Also, if you aren’t going straight to a shower after your run I highly recommend having 1 or 2 dry tops to change into post-run. You’re clothes are going to be sweaty, and if any snow/sleet/rain is falling your outside layers will be wet. Get those clothes and get into dry clothes asap! And don’t forget to stretch afterwards.

Below are a few links to other Winter Running tip sheets, that I have found helpful in the past few months.

Mindy from Michigan shows explains how many layers to wear based on what the actual temperature is outside, find it here.

While Ashley from New York City has a great graphic that keeps the rules very easy, find her ideas here!

Also, remember to be safe! Karen from Florida has some great tips, you can find here!


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