How to Run in Snow After a Blizzard

I can’t even believe I’m writing this – but it’s not as bad as you’d think. Yesterday, with one too many Christmas cookies weighing on my conscience, I laced up my running shoes after the East Coast media-dubbed “Christmas Blizzard of 2010”, and went out for a near five-mile run. What I learned? With the right gear to keep you warm, running in snow is actually quite fun.

With caution to avoid ice patches, running on shoveled sidewalks or packed snow were the safest terrain options. I would compare the packed snow of the sidewalk to the feeling of running on wet sand in the summer.

With a few pointers, I think you might be up for a snow run today, if your area is knee-deep in the fluffy stuff.


1. Dress warm and in layers – This is a no-brainer, but you want to make sure your fabric is light-weight while still wicking away wind. I used a base layer of thin, wind-resistant material, with a heavy sweatshirt and sweatpants over it to seal in warmth.

2. To prevent breathing in cold air (something that always makes me sick), breathe through a scarf – I tied a scarf around my neck and used this to warm the air before breathing it in. It saved me the next-day sore throat I’ve endured after past winter runs.

3. Hats, gloves, etc. – One of my Christmas gifts this year, was a pair of gloves that can still touch the iPhone (someone knows me too well!). It was my first time trying them out, and they worked wonderfully. Not only was I able to snap some snowy pictures, but I could change up the music on my iPod. A winter hat tucked over my earphones and no wind was blowing them off my face!

Now this getup is certainly not the sexiest of outfits, but who cares when no one – I mean no one – else is out on the road? I ran around the river close to my family’s house, through town and around a nearby park, and mostly encountered a few wind gusts and some slow driving cars, but no other runners. By bundling up, I stayed warm, especially once I started moving.

Have fun on your snowy run if you choose to brave the elements!

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About the13thmile

I am proud to now say I am a half-marathon runner! Three half-marathons qualify for that status, I think. I blog about about running, nutrition and sometimes some other stuff. I share my research, tips and experiences with you, and am inspired by the supportive running community! I enjoy connecting with other runners, and hearing about other people's running experiences. Feel free to reach out if you have ran marathons or half marathons in the past!
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5 Responses to How to Run in Snow After a Blizzard

  1. Dave says:

    The pics are really pretty. We had 14 inches last February and I wanted to run, but as my road shoes were sliding around and I was two weeks from my first half-marathon, I said, “Not.” Do you run with trail shoes or regular runners?

    • the13thmile says:

      Thanks! I ran with regular sneakers, because my winter boots are not with me this week. What do you run with in snow? And it was probably smart to stay off your feet with a big race so close 🙂

  2. Love this blog . Great information ! Keep up the good work .

  3. Pingback: 3 Ways to Workout at Home During Winter Snowstorms | The13thmile's Blog

  4. Pingback: The 13th Mile: At-Home Workouts For Winter Snowstorms | PiA & yZa

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