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Stay Motivated for Winter Running: The Warrior Way

It’s hard to leave the comfort of your home and head out into the cold. But, if it was easy, it wouldn’t mean as much. Each time you complete a workout, you’ve notched another victory and become just a bit tougher.

Toughness comes with conquering your fears and believing in yourself. Toughness is a result of early morning runs, late night runs after a long day at work, or simply heading outside for a run while everyone else looks for extra blankets or turns up the thermostat. Wimps.

Music helps. I like to crank up a little Jay Z or GN’R while I get dressed for my run. It’s become a ritual. Tights, long-sleeved base layer, wool socks, windproof shell, Vaseline on my face, hat, mittens, running shoes and my Yaks. If you dress appropriately, you can run in almost any conditions.

The first mile is  the worst mile. You know what I mean. But, I hit my stride after 10-15 minutes and start to enjoy myself. Passing quiet homes with the blue light of flickering televisions, I can’t help feel a bit superior to my plodding and lethargic neighbors. Breath in, breathe out.

By the time I reach home, the freezing temperatures feel comfortable. I take off my hat and walk around outside until I begin to cool down. Entering the house, I’m greeted by smiles and barks and the smell of good food. I walk through the door feeling like a new man. Calmer, more confident, and at peace with the world.

Winter warriors dominate the racing scene in the early spring. The mental and physical boost from winter running can’t be matched by treadmills or spin classes. Runners need to run. I’ll be ready. Will you?

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