11 Thoughts Every Runner Has During a Winter Run

Winter running is the bane of my existence because I hate being cold. I end up wearing too many layers and then I sweat my butt off which leads to me being even colder than I was when I started. It’s a vicious cycle...one might even call it... masochistic. But it’s the price I am more than willing to pay because the alternative involves a terrible awful torture device called a treadmill. So I’ll take it.

The very first few winter runs are going to be rough while you adjust to the weather. But it does it does get better and you will acclimate…eventually. No your lungs aren't going to freeze and no it’s not as dangerous as it sounds. Last night I had a MISERABLE run. I run after work by the East River so I can avoid tourists and stoplights and the wind was OUT OF CONTROL. It was freezing, it was dark, I was cold, and I just kept thinking “You had 10 cookies at work today. Quitting is not an option today!”

 Here are 11 thoughts every winter runner has during their runs:

1. It Won’t Be That Bad.

I have 45 layers on and the sun is out…how bad can this be?

2. Do I need more layers?

You don’t want to be too hot…but then again you don’t want to be too cold…

2. That, “OH SHIT” moment…

Prepare to feel like there’s a dementor sucking out your soul.

3. Am I crying?

“Are those tears? Am I crying? Why is there water streaming out of my eye balls?” Oh that’s just your eyes trying not to freeze over. Or perhaps it’s a subconscious reaction to the fact that you decided to run in an Arctic Tundra.

4. My nose is running faster than I am.

How do I turn my snot faucet off? What is happening to my body? How is my body producing so much snot?!? All great questions with no answers. Don't fight the snot, just let it happen.

5. I’m running in a wind tunnel!

"Was I supposed to start with the wind at my back? I’m pretty sure I did this backwards...." (TIP: Don’t start with the wind at your back. When you’re halfway through your run and sweaty, that’s when you want the wind at your back.)

6. Why can’t I breathe?

Why does it feel like someone is sitting on your chest? That’s an excellent question, one that I don’t know the answer to.   

7. 1 mile?!?!? That can’t be right…

Why is it that just 1 mile feels like 20 miles when it’s really cold out? I actually stopped to check RunKeeper last night because I was 100% certain it was inaccurate. No…it was accurate.  

8. I can’t feel my toes!

"Oh my god, I can’t feel my toes. Is this safe? I should Google it…OH GOD I CAN’T FEEL MY FINGERS. SIRI!?!? SIRI! SIRI I NEED YOU!"

9. Wait…now I’m too hot.

Then there's a point where you just get to hot. But you know the second you take a layer off you are going to freeze. And now that you're sweaty you just can't win...

10. This hot shower is going to feel great!

AND THEN WHEN YOU GET IN THE SHOWER IT’S MORE PAINFUL THAN THE RUN! Is that just me? Why is that so painful?! It feels like I’m being stabbed! STABBED I TELL YOU!  

11. I'm amazing.

Nothing makes me feel more disgustingly self-congratulatory than when a co-worker is all, “Did you just go for a run?! Woah Kelly, you are so intense! It’s freezing out.” And then I act like it’s no big deal. "Psh, it wasn't that cold. Just a short 6 miles." #WINK

Stay warm out there cold winter runners. You’ll be a polar bear before you know it. Until tomorrow, #RunSelfieRepeat.


Kelly Roberts

It all started when a silly joke made headlines back in 2014 when I took selfies with hot guys “hottie hunting” my way through the New York City Half Marathon. But ironically enough, I haven't always been a runner. As the self-proclaimed former President of the "I f*cking hate running club", I spent most of my life finding ways to avoid physical activity. Growing up, I missed over 70 days of PE my senior year. Working out was something I thought I had to suffer through in order to lose weight. 

Then, in 2009, my younger brother passed away unexpectedly and struggling to manage my grief, I gained more than 75 pounds. With the weight gain came a new fight to regain my sense of self and learn to love the body I saw when I looked in the mirror. Then one Thanksgiving morning, drowning in grief and self doubt, I decided to go for a run. I didn't make it half way down my street before I had to stop to walk but for some reason, struggling forward made more sense than getting back into bed. It turns out that running is a lot like grief, neither ever really get easier, you just get stronger. 

Over time, I realized that while some people are in fact born runners, others are made. I created this blog Run, Selfie, Repeat and my new podcast by the same name with the hopes to inspire others to say yes to themselves while making them laugh hysterically because laughing, in my opinion, is the solution to everything. 

Named by Women's Running as one of twenty women who are changing the sport of running and by Competitor Magazine as one of 12 Influential and inspiring runners under 30, my mission is to inspire others to get embrace a healthy lifestyle and pursue the strongest version of themselves possible.