As daylight savings time is upon us here in the USA, the best run times are now blanketed with darkness. To add to the dark we now add the other runner favorite to cold. Although it is not completely here yet the mornings are cold enough to almost stop you at the door. This is where discipline takes over. Much like running in the heat, you must have a well thought out plan before running in the cold.
It starts as usual with proper fueling and hydration. Many people fall into a trap during cold months and drink way less water and walk around nearly dehydrated without thinking they are close. This is due to us believing we do not need it as much when it is cold.
The body needs water to survive, you need to keep hydrated all the time not just when you are hot. You also need to keep eating right even when you tend to indulge more. The fall and winter are the pitfall seasons for many athletes. Many cruise into the holiday season and wind up gaining weight and losing the gains made the rest of the year. Again discipline must take the front line. Believe me we all love the cookies and pies that are everywhere during this time. We just need to take it in moderation and know when to stop. My advice is to enjoy the time but keep your training in mind while still having fun.
Secondly each of us is made differently and feel the cold in different levels. What may be cold to one person is not to another. You need to know yourself and dress accordingly. Sometimes it does not matter if you look cool or cute when you go out to get your run in. You need to be comfortable and keep yourself warm and thus healthy so you make it to the spring season of races.
These are just little tidbits of making it through this time of year. What do you do to make it through?