Staying warm while barefoot running

Posted: November 29, 2011 in Barefoot, Fitness, Health, Life, Running, Sandals, Shoes, Weight loss
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Morning Puffins,

Alright, so I know that you all have been working really hard on your barefoot running, and I couldn’t be more proud of you. But with winter around the corner (or at your doorstep for some of you), how will we continue to increase our mileage when it’s so frickin cold outside? That’s a good question and it’s one that I have been struggling with for a few weeks now. I think there are a list of options to help us cope. Some might work better for others, so I’ll just list the major ones that I think could be of use to everyone.

So let’s get into it:

First of all, run later in the day. This can be beneficial for a multitude of reasons. First off, the sun, no matter how feeble it is shining, will provide a little warmth to the concrete/grass/trail what have you. While it won’t be nice and toasty like in the summer, it’ll be a lot better than the frozen morning ground. Not only will the ground be warmer, but so will the air around you. To put it simply… RUN WHEN IT’S WARMEST.

This is as useful for running as cushioned trainers.

Second, is really a matter of several layers. Puffins, are not like onions, but the principle still applies. We will be warmer when there are more layers of clothing between our skin and the elements. Savvy? See that kid over there on the left? Does he look like he can run to you? We Puffins already have a little bit extra round the middle and we certainly don’t need to make ourselves look like bright red Frosty the Snowmen…Besides, how many of you really own a brick/rust red snow suit like that? If you do, I want photos. What we want is a moisture wicking layer closest to our skin, followed by an insulating layer, followed by a wind breaker layer. If it’s not particularly freezing, you can probably skip the insulation layer and just go with moister wicking and wind breaking layers respectively. The moisture wicking is important. No one wants to chafe mid run, and chafed nips isn’t sexy. Just ask my wife.

I'll hopefully be getting a pair of running tights for winter. 100% guarantee I won't make em look that good.

Now I know, you are probably asking, but Puff…Won’t our feet be cold? Well uhm, yes. But unless it’s below 32 degrees farenheit and wet, you really shouldn’t worry about frostbite. You can still be bare. As long as your core is warm, blood will still flow to the extremities. This means nice toasty feet after our cores get warm. I’d be more concerned about your hands than your feet. Wear a pair of gloves.

Everyone, well at least me, loves SNOW. It’s my favorite part of winter. I think this has to do with never having very much of it here in Oklahoma. However, with snow comes salt and sandy roads. This is bad news bears, Walter Matthau, sorry had to channel my inner Dr. Evil for that. This is bad news bears for us Puffs. Why you may ask? Well if that chemical salt will melt water, and is designed to suck moisture out of things, what do you think it’s going to do to our pads that we have spent all this time developing? It’s going to peel them off faster than Brett Favre comes out of retirement. It’s nasty stuff, and losing skin mid run when your feet aren’t as sensitive as they should be is bad stuff man. So on wet days, get yourself some minimalist shoes and go to town. I’m personally going to be sticking with my KSO or my huaraches. Really depends on how wet outside it is. I keep wanting to say moist, but it just seems inappropriate.

The biggest piece of advice that I can offer, remember this is my first barefoot winter too, is to TRY THINGS OUT. Sure, you can follow my advice blindly, but that’s kind of cultish. Although a cult following would be cool, it’s not what I’m about. Test out my theories, if you don’t think they work, let me know about it. Rest assured I’ll be continuing to test out my theories as well, and they might or might not work out well for me. But that’s just it…It’s about you, you and yourself. Do what works best for you. Above all, LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. 

If you have any advice let me know in the comments.

Until next time,

Puff.

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