Tag Archives: strength

How to Train in Winter Temperatures & Adjust Your Training Indoors

Dark, wet and temperatures far below 0° F are the conditions when all runners suffer at this time of year.

Not only is it uncomfortable to run outside in these conditions, it can also lead to injuries and infection. If you want to compete or train outside, consider following these tips below.

As the cold air can cause damage in the lungs, you should choose the mildest hours of the day, if you are forced to do your workout outside. You will want to choose an extra layer of windproof clothing because the wind can cool down your core-temperature. You will want to wear more thin layers, because this way you can adjust your apparel to the needs of your body and avoid exceeding perspiration while your body is warming up during your workout. Because most heat is lost through the head, you will want to wear a hat while running outside. To protect your facial skin from the cold temperatures, use an acidic skin-cream, or if you’re like my husband, wear a ski mask.

When you have finished your run, make sure to replace your workout gear with a dry and warm layer of clean clothes as soon as possible so you don’t catch a nasty cold from finishing a workout and having a chill.

If you have an opportunity to switch your training to an indoor facility to avoid extreme temperatures, I’ve got tips for that too.

Runs can be shifted 1:1 to the treadmill. You will want to choose 1-3% ascend to simulate running outside. Be sure to stretch out your calf-muscles, because the ascend causes more power-transfer out of this area. If you are doing intervals on the treadmill, raise your speed at the end of the previous zone, to be in the high-interval-zone from the first second on. Stay in the interval-zone until the last second and then slow down to the recovery-speed.

If you like diversion, you can use a stepper, an elliptical-trainer or a cross-trainer instead of always running on the dreadmill.

If you are not into a treadmill or machine, this is a great opportunity to mix it up and add strength and flexibility workouts.  These workouts will help you to improve your running while still providing an alternative for a safe warm indoor workout at home.

Indoor or outdoor, be sure stretch and dress appropriately!


There is NO off season!

I began my journey in January 2012 in an effort to lose about 15 pounds of weight I had slowly gained over the past couple of years. As my journey progressed I began to pay more attention to what I ate and decided to try a vegetarian diet which progressed to a vegan/plant-based diet. I’m happy with this decision and have stayed on this path since May 2012.

Along with changing my diet I also began to exercise. It was simply walking at first with an occasional “game” on the Kinect. I signed up for a 6K as a means to keep myself accountable after “The Biggest Loser” at work competition ended. Things kind of snowballed from there and I did several more 5Ks, adventure races, bike races and triathlons. I was addicted!

My exercise schedule during the racing season/summer months was determined by the next race. The typical week consisted of 2-3 days of swimming, 3-4 days of running and usually 2 days of biking. I took a rest day on Sundays (except if that was race day, then my rest day was Monday).

I did my final triathlon on September 23rd and my final 5K on October 6th. Race season was over, now what?

I didn’t need to train as intensely as I had been over the past 6 months, but I also couldn’t just stop! It was time to re-evaluate my exercise schedule. I read a bunch of articles online about off season training/maintenance plans. Based on those, I put together my own plan/schedule. Nothing formal and very flexible. (A must with three young kids!)

Since I don’t particularly like swimming all too much, I decided to take a break from doing laps at the pool. I plan on resuming at least 2 days per week swimming schedule in the New Year, I haven’t decided yet when I will actually do it!

I still run at least 2 days per week, sometimes three. I go to spin class 2-3 times per week. I’ve also resumed some weight training/flexibility type stuff.

I have plans on doing the local Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning as well as the Polar Bear series through the local YMCA. Beginning the first weekend in January there is a race every other weekend through March. The first two races are 5Ks, then two 10Ks, a 10 miler and then a half marathon as the final race. By the time that series is over, it’ll be time to get serious about my triathlon race season for 2013!

Here’s what my typical week looks like:
Monday: Spin Class @ YMCA
Tuesday: Strength/Flexibility routine (I like Fitness Blender YouTube videos) or Running
Wednesday: Spin Class @ Allegheny Endurance
Thursday: Day Off
Friday: Running
Saturday: Spin Class @ YMCA
Sunday: Running

For my running days I follow this schedule; Easy Run (20-30 minutes, usually about 5K), Intervals (these vary in intensity and duration), and a Long Run (45-60 minutes, typically 10K)

I tend to be a bit OCD about training and log all my food and exercise. I use Beginner Triathlete as well as MyFitnessPal. I am also reading a lot of articles and subscribe to the Short Course Triathlon Seminar through Endurance Nation.

What’s your off season training plan?