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This year, Mother Nature chose to usher in the spring season with…a snow storm?

And with the unpredictable forecasts, we’ve had the last few weeks, who’s to say this is the last of snow we’ll be seeing? For most of us, it’s a pain having to keep up with this wishy-washy weather, but for runners, the recent snowfall is an opportunity to explore uncharted territory in our training.

As is the case with running in any abnormal weather, you’ll have to make a few adjustments to your usual routine when planning to run in the snow:

Spice up your wardrobe

The sight of snow may leave you feeling tempted to stuff into as many layers as possible, but when planning your run, staying warm isn’t the only concern you need to prepare for. Make time to do a little research before heading out and you may be surprised to find what winter-wear could wind up sabotaging your run. Adorning your thickest pair of socks, for example, may seem like a solid plan in retrospect, but when it comes to feet and cold weather, it’s all about circulation rather than insulation

And always remember in the back of your mind that even in the snow, your body temperature will rise as you run, so either avoid going overboard with your layers or dress up in clothes you wouldn’t mind tossing in the trash when you start to heat up.

Spice up your routine

snow

Courtesy of Fit Freedom

You may have to replace your trek across Memorial Bridge with something a little less icy. Fortunately, D.C. has more to offer than bustling city streets and now is the perfect time to explore some of the breathtaking trails available in the area. Rock Creek Park is a favorite among local runners, with a diverse variety of paths available for joggers of every level. Invest in a decent pair of trail- or snowshoes for better traction and see how some of your favorite running spots, change under a fluffy layer of snow!

Spice up your form

snow

Courtesy of Running Magazine

If you’re less experienced in winter running, you may find yourself feeling sore in muscles you didn’t know you had! Though it may sound inaccurate, you’ll actually want to slow it down when jogging through the snow. In addition, keep your stride short and your feet low to the ground to reduce your risk of slipping or overburdening your muscles. You may struggle at first to jump right into a snowy run the same way you would on a normal day. Keep in mind that this doesn’t mean you’re weak. Rather, you’re really just working out different parts of your body that aren’t used to being strained. It may be a good idea to give yourself ample time to heal between winter runs to avoid over-exerting, or injuring yourself.

What do you always make sure to bring before heading out for a run in the snow? Let us know in the comments!

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