because there’s snow on the ground, it doesn’t
mean you should take your running goals into hibernation.
Winter is a great time to get outside and enjoy the fresh
air, and running in the snow can be fun, if you’re
prepared. There is more to running in the winter than
simply embracing the cold—you’ll need the
right gear to ensure your safety.
Follow these three tips to stay safe and
comfortable while running in the snow.
the right gear
Making sure you are prepped with the right equipment before
heading outdoors is the best way to guarantee a safe and
successful run. Buy shoes with good traction on the outsole
with either Gore-Tex or water-resistant materials to keep
your feet warm and dry. Some other gear to invest in is
thermal or merino-wool moisture-wicking socks, a winter-specific
hat, warm gloves that are not too bulky, plus a wind and
water-resistant jacket to keep you warm and dry.
Look for a running jacket that isn’t black, and
that has reflective elements, so you can be seen by motorists.
If you can’t get your mind off that stylish black
jacket, there are plenty of reflective accessories (i.e.,
lights, vests and reflective bands) you can purchase from
your local running store to help make you visible.
Find the safest route
The last thing you want is to risk falling on slippery
roads or trails. Avoid roads or paths that have not been
cleared of snow and ice, and instead, look for running
routes that have been plowed and are well-lit, so drivers
and other pedestrians can see you.
If you are on the trails, be cautious
of your surroundings and watch for potential hazards,
such as branches or other debris that could be hidden
beneath the snow.
Take it slow and listen to your
Even if the snow looks like it’s packed down well,
take it slow and be cautious so you can grasp the conditions
in the first few kilometres. Start at a slower pace and
gradually increase your pace as you become more comfortable
with the footing.
One technique runners use for better grip
and control in the snow is to shorten their running stride.
Using this strategy keeps your centre of gravity low,
which can result in having more control on a wet or slippery
If you feel cold, tired, or uncomfortable, don’t
hesitate to stop running (but do keep walking, so you
don’t get too cold too quickly). Don’t get
too caught up in your pace. One slow training run isn’t
going to disrupt your training, but pushing your body
toward injury will.