This is the first year since I started running races that I haven't entered the new year with at least one race on the schedule - my calendar is empty empty empty empty, and it is weird!  So many people are training for Boston right now (which makes me jealous), and I'm just going out in the world because, well, it's fun. 

For the most part.  The other day it was 0° and I said ABSOLUTELY NOT, but if it's double digits and nothing hurts, I will probably give it a shot.  But this requires a lot of planning, since once I overheat, it's game over; but at the same time, I also don't really want to say goodbye to any of my extremities.  This week I think I finally found the balance of enough clothing without being too bulky to move.

So, for those days that fall between 10 - 25°:

  • technical base layer 
  • long-sleeved technical shirt, brushed interior (this week I've been rocking a hideous brown shirt I got for running the MCM... ugly though it might be, it is incredibly warm) 
  • medium weight (preferably blindingly bright) jacket
  • tube scarf (good for breathing through at stop lights and the first few minutes of a run)
  • headband (toasty ears!) 
  • winter weight running leggings, brushed interior
  • wool socks
  • gloves!  (these were a freebie from something, and they are loads better than anything I've ever paid money for... of course) 

I would probably add in a hat and some toe warmers if I was going to haul it for any longer, but if I don't line up a race in the next month or so, I'll probably just keep running 5ks and work on not triggering any peroneal tendinitis.   

The good thing is that because of the cold, I hardly sweat, so I do not feel bad about re-wearing most of this gear repeatedly throughout the week.  Also?  Because I'm not training, I don't have to be out for very long.  I'm in and out in about 30 minutes tops (stoplight dependent).  Winter maintenance.  It tastes like hot cocoa and feels like frozen nose hair.  

Sidenote: one of the games I play to distract myself from the cold is to guess how many layers are on the other people who are also out running. I feel like I'm always wearing significantly less, but who knows.  (I'm also trying to find my tie-dye short shorts runner, but I haven't seen him in a bit.  Maybe it's too cold.  Or maybe I just don't recognize him wearing not tie-dye short shorts?)  My other distraction method is to tell myself that I only have to be out a minute for every degree, and by the time I hit that, I'm usually warmed up and game for running another 15-20 minutes.