The Winter Running Gear That’s Keeping Me Cozy While I Work On My Fitness

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Call me cliché, but I do love to approach a new year as a fresh start. And while I don’t subscribe to the “new you” mentality, I appreciate a dedicated season to pressing the reset button on my health practices. This year, I recommitted to my outdoor running habit, which fell by the wayside in the latter half of 2019. Although my intentions are good, my timing isn’t, as the chilly temps don't exactly make for an appealing workout environment. However, in a testament to my dedication, I've equipped myself with winter running gear that's making this resolution not only doable, but also bearable.

Now, to be clear, I live in Los Angeles; winter weather is certainly not as intense as it would be in, say, Chicago or New York City. That said, the mornings and evenings over here on the West Coast can be particularly crisp (dipping well below 50 degrees Fahrenheit), and these also happen to be the times of day I’m able to squeeze in a sprint. This means my go-to leggings, sports bra, and loose t-shirt trio just won’t cut it — unless I want to turn into a moving popsicle.

However, because running warms up the body fast, you run the risk of overheating if you're too bundled up. And, in the same token, when you wind down from your exercise, the body cools just as quickly and wearing damp or wet clothing while out in the cold is a true recipe for disaster (read: sickness). So, the moral of the story is, stick to strategic layering that will warm you but allow for some breathing room.

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According to Runner's World, you should add 10 to 20 degrees to the outside temps to calculate one's running temperature — and dress accordingly. For instance, on a particularly icy L.A. morning of about 45 degrees Fahrenheit, my running temperature would be between 55 and 65 degrees. That said, because I live near the ocean, the wind adds a breezy chill I also need to consider. So, for days like this, I would opt for thick leggings, a long-sleeve top, a running vest, and a cozy beanie to keep my head warm.

Now, should temps drop even more or some pesky rain threatens my workout, there are plenty of down jackets, hoodies, and gloves that I can add to my fitness look that'll keep me toasty. To make sure I'm ready for anything the winter weather throws at me, below, the 10 running essentials that will definitely come in handy this season.