Tundra Training Series1/7/2015
Inevitably, the arrival of the New Year brings well-intentioned resolutions. Favorites include pledges to quit smoking, drink less, spend more time with family and friends, travel more, develop a hobby, etc. At the top of most lists is exercise. While you should be exercising regularly year-round, why not start a new winter regiment that keeps you in shape, too?
“As a dedicated runner, I know it is difficult to motivate myself to run on some cold days, and I am sure others share that same feeling,” said Michael Donahue, series organizer and owner of The Athletic Training Room. “The reason I organized the Tundra Training Series was to bring people together to start a new activity, train for a spring race or just continue running with peers who enjoy the same activity.”
Before hitting the pavement, remember this: Don’t start cold. Donahue said there will be a meet-up 15 minutes before each run to socialize and warm up. If you’re running on your own, go up and down the stairs or jump rope at an easy pace for a few minutes indoors to get you limbered up and your blood flowing and before heading out.
“Running outside at this time of year will better prepare runners for spring events, and maintaining mileage will help people move into more race-specific workouts closer to the event,” Donahue said.
Additionally, the right attire makes all the difference as well, he said. Dry socks to help wick way moisture are particularly good to wear in weather like this. Cold and wet feet lose warmth quicker than cold and dry feet because water conducts heat away from the body quicker than air. It’s also important to change to a dry pair of socks immediately following your run.
“Dressing appropriately is very important — it is important to stay warm, especially extremities, to reduce risk of frostbite,” said Donahue. “Otherwise, the main risk is slipping on the ice.”
If you’re preparing for that big spring marathon, you’re much better off training in conditions that are similar to those on race day, Donahue said. On the graded and uneven surface of the road, you’ll be training your muscles, joints and lungs to handle the real thing. The treadmill can’t give you the same workout that pavement can, so running outdoors as much as possible can get your body in line for race day.
The term “bathing suit season” was coined for a reason: Many people spend the spring and summer months on some sort of diet, trying to lose the winter weight and regain their shape. But you don’t have to let the colder months turn you into a lazy pile of mush.
“The run group is hosted by individuals who specialize in sports medicine and offer help training for events if desired,” said Donahue. “Programs can be individualized if someone is just beginning to run or if they want to meet specific goals in an upcoming race — we can help with that.” CV
Tundra Training Series
Beginning Jan. 5, 2015, at The Athletic Training Room
2785 N. Ankeny Blvd., Suite 17
Mondays at 4:45 p.m. and Thursdays at 5:15 p.m.
Participate in 10 group runs and receive an official ATR Runner’s T-shirt.
David Rowley is an Iowa native with a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Iowa and a master’s in film journalism from the University of Glasgow in Scotland.