As the bitter end of Daylight Saving Time sets in and we see the weather turn colder, it can be hard to maintain your running mojo. When the evenings are dark and the mornings cold, fighting the temptation to stay wrapped up indoors can be one gruelling battle. That’s why we’ve recruited elite marathon runner and first-placed British female in the 2014 London Marathon Amy Whiteheard to give you her top five tips for staying motivated as the weather turns colder.
1. Target realistic new race PBs
If your legs are running less miles it’s the perfect time to go for a new 5K or 10K PB. This will help to ensure marathon pace feels slower and easier in the spring too.
2. Add more speed work to your training
Keep sessions shorter and sharper. Add 6 x 100m stride reps onto a five-mile run to build speed once or twice a week. On a track, try a 200m jog followed by 200m hard for 20mins, or 8x400m with 200m jog recovery. These sessions can be done on trails and grass.
3. Work on strength, conditioning and core
This will reduce injuries during your marathon programme. Target increasing the length of time you can hold a plank from 30secs to 1min, then
90secs to 2mins.
4. Invest in some new winter running gear
A lightweight waterproof, cap, lightweight running gloves, leggings and dry-fit tops will make you feel you are ready for anything.
5. Enjoy being a runner
Winter can provide some beautiful running routes. Parks tend to be more tranquil and running on a crisp autumnal or frosty morning makes you realise it’s a real privilege to be a runner.