James borrell is a conservation scientist and science communicator, with a particular interest in how species adapt to changing climate.

Winter miles, Summer smiles…

After many long hours pounding the pavements or pedal pumping on the road bike, I expect whoever came up with this little rhyme was rather pleased.

Summer is a great time to be outdoors, whether your training for a race or just enjoying the extra daylight hours. But I don’t think Winter should get the sore end of this deal. So if you need a few reasons to don the trainers and get outside, even when it’s windy, raining, or even snowing, then try these…

  • An immediate bond of camaraderie with any other soul that is also foolish enough to be out braving the winter, normally exchanged with a stoic nod. Although in extreme conditions a ‘thumbs up’ or even a full-blown grin might be acceptable.
  • Negotiating very muddy tracks might improve your hurdling technique.
  • Often you’ll have the trail/path/track to yourself.
  • You will save energy and money on heating, when you finish your home will feel like a sauna.
  • Fight off colds and flu with a healthy dose of exercise.
  • Our Winter really isn’t that bad, we could have total darkness for 3 months a year!
  • Running outside and having an adventure will beat a treadmill every time, hands down.
  • Icy paths will use neglected muscle groups.
  • The shower afterwards will feel even better (and if you’re a student, you can treat running in the rain as your shower!)
  • Your friends will think your crazy.

Once you’ve started, I’m sure you won’t let a little rain or snow stand in your way. Let me know if you have any other great reasons that should be added to the list.