Well it seems that fall is now arriving to the Pacific Northwest. The leaves are turning, it's crisp in the morning, and the first of many storms has arrived.
The question that I seem to get daily is "Do your group runs continue all year?"
Of course, the answer is "yes.. why not?"
Running year round in the PNW is quite easy vs. other parts of the country.
Dressing for the weather is quite simple: never wear cotton! Always choose synthetic or wool clothing. These have wicking and warmth abilities once they get wet (sweat or rain).
Here is a basic rule to remember: I call it the VIP rule
Ventilation, Insulation and Protection.
Ventilation - is the way to ventilate the heat / sweat from your body.
Insulation - keeps your body warm.
Protection - protects your body from the elements, sun, wind, rain , sleet, and snow.
There are a few products out there that do an amazing job with this.
Craft has Zero Extreme and Zero tops. Zero Extreme is geared for temps near 55 to 35 degrees, Zero is temps 40 to 25 degrees. Sounds like the PNW in the winter!
In running, we generate heat, our wicking shirt is our insulation. If you walk you may want to add another layer to trap that heat, or wear a thicker shirt. Smartwool makes a lightweight top that works wonderful.
Protecting yourself from the wind and rain is key. While most Gore-tex jackets (waterproof) are too warm, they do not ventilate fast enough. Look for jackets with body venting as your arms swing, or other types of venting. There are a few jackets that have a great wind/ water proof front and highly breathable fabric on the back. Sugoi makes the Firewall 220
Sometimes 1 shirt will fit all 3 requirements for the VIP rule
Keep this idea in mind when about to go outside for a run:
1. What is the temp? dress for 5- 20 degrees warmer.
2. Is it windy? This steals your heat without protection.
3. Is it wet? Wetness robs you of warmth.
Now get out there and run.