How Do You Run in the Winter?

Baby, it’s cold outside!

Many people hang up their running shoes for the winter but some of us trudge on. It isn’t very fun (I still don’t think running is actually very fun) but it is very do-able. Of course a nice run on a 60 degree evening is more ideal but I live in Maine and I love it here. Maine isn’t going to change so I have to.

You are going to need the right attitude, a little drive and it is probably a good idea to look into some good cold weather running gear but you CAN run in the winter.

Get the motivation

It is going to be up to you to get out there and run. Not many friends will be dragging you out and a Sunday brunch is going to sound a lot more appealing than a cold run. You need to have the motivation to drag yourself out there.

Think about how much farther ahead in the game you will be when the warmer months roll around. Think about not gaining that 3, 5, 7, 20 pounds you seem to pick up every winter. Take note of your energy levels. I ,for one, always feel tired and more into hibernating than socializing in the winter. When I run, I have a lot more energy and I feel much better.

Get the right equipment

One of the reasons I took up running was that, other than shoes, you didn’t need to invest a lot in clothing or club memberships. My first winter running, I used the clothing I had. Over the last few years I have slowly been adding and acquiring better running clothes and it has made a big difference.

Some of the key pieces I would recommend for making winter runs more bearable would be:

Be flexible

I was supposed to run tonight but it is currently 25 degrees, 20 mile an hour winds and it feels like it is 13 degrees out. Tomorrow though it is supposed to be about 30 degrees and the wind is supposed to die down. I am going to run tomorrow afternoon instead of tonight. Also, the sun will be out so it will be more pleasant. This means I will have to go into work early so I can sneak out for an hour or so but it will be worth it.

For me to run, I need to schedule it. I am not able to run ‘when I have time’ because time will never just present itself. I am too busy. I have to put it in my calendar but when dealing with the weather, you have to be willing to wiggle some things around. I try to run every Wednesday night and I swear Wednesdays are almost guaranteed to be rainy or snowy. Just because the weather doesn’t cooperate doesn’t mean you are off the hook.

Know where you can find a treadmill

I hate the treadmill. It is torture. Sometimes though you just have to admit it is too cold or that you aren’t going to catch a break with Mother Nature. Treadmills are better than curling up on the couch with a pint of ice cream. I cancelled my gym membership but I am lucky enough to have a treadmill in my office building. I also know the day drop in rate for two local gyms between my office and my house. For me, a drop in of $8 here and there is cheaper than a full membership to a gym.

That is some of the ways I can manage to run outside and I hope that helps. How about any of you? Do any of you have any advice on keeping with running during the colder and darker months?

I also just found this neat page on the Runner’s World site where you put in the weather conditions and they recommend what you wear.

Photo credit: pixdaus

Stay warm and happy running!

Thank God I Never Found Someone Like You!

Oh that Adele song… it hurts to listen to is because it is something we have all felt at some point in our lives (if you have a pulse and a heart to be broken that is). SNL even recently spoofed it (song and spoof are below if you need a good cry or a good laugh or a good laugh AT a good cry).

I have had my heart broken before.
I have loved and not been loved back.
I have a type of person I thought I was looking for.
I have an image of what marriage is like.

And then there was Adam and my marriage. Thank God.

One of the first evenings I hung out with Adam, before the courting or the dating or the house or the ring… I said to him ‘YOU would be PERFECT for my friend Steph!’

Steph has a type and it is Adam. Big and strong, hairy, funny… but that wasn’t MY type.
Thank God Steph didn’t snatch him up!

What I have, I wasn’t looking for. Heck, when we met (or re-met) I had a bet with a friend to not date anyone for that summer. I wasn’t looking and this is what found me:

I have a man who thinks I am perfect, even when I am really, really not.
I have a man who makes me laugh and isn’t scared to be silly.
I have a man who likes to go out and DO things with me.
I have a man who pushes me to be greater every day.
I have a man who thinks we have a lot more living to do and a lot more things to try.
I have a man who has a wonderful family that love and support me.
I have a man who loves MY weirdo family and my little island.
I have a man who wants to be his absolute best for me and himself.
I have a man who is more handsome every day and smarter every day.
I have a man who loves my dog and has supported me in our toughest year but let me make all the decisions I needed to.
I have a man who will tell me I am wrong.
I have a man who is hairy… but I will have to learn to deal with that.

None of this is what I was actually looking for but I sure am glad I have it.

Now thank you Adele, for making me sad but then making me think. Thank you for making me very, very happy that I never found the someone I thought I was looking for.

Now here is the Adele song if you need a good cry

And here is the SNL skit if you need a good laugh at the good cry you just had

Fooducate to Eat a Bit Better

FooducateLast week I attended the Small Business Workplace Wellness Conference and I really enjoyed it. I usually enjoy any conference not in my industry (I crave information) but this was a really nicely done, small event. So, not only am I going to torture myself with living a better lifestyle but I have tools to torture my colleagues as well (insert evil laugh).

One of my first orders of business when I left the conference was I bought a whiteboard, hung it up above of company snacks that are always readily available and I graded each item. I graded them using this really cool app Fooducate. I wrote about Fooducate for Guiding Stars this April too.

With Fooducate, you simply use your wicked smart phone and scan the bar code on almost any item of food and it grades it for you (A – F). You can also search for a food by name if you don’t have a bar code. Not only do you get a grade for your item but you also get healthier alternatives to that item and the reasoning behind why your items is getting the grade it is.

Cool ‘eh?

I even like their tagline: Fooducate – eat a bit better.
Their logo is pretty cute too.
Did I mention the app is free?

I really do use this app. I like it. As we know, eating better isn’t about freakish diets, it is about small changes you can make just to eat a bit better. You want to make a change in your diet that you can maintain.

So I wanted to tell you about the app too. Also, pretty much all the snacks at work got a C- to a D. I have my work cut out for me!