So, if you live in the upper Midwest or the North East (seriously, if you live there, you have my eternal respect), and you’re running, you’re dressing a bit differently than you did a few months ago. What was once a quick process of shirt, shorts, and shoes has become a literal laundry list of options: Wool socks? Leggings? Sweats over that? Long sleeves? Sweat shirt? Jacket? Mittens? Gloves? Scarf? Hat? Yaktrax?

It all gets really crazy. We start looking at the weather the night before, trying to figure out what it will feel like. When it’s so cold, you have to make sure the wind chill is taken into consideration. You also have to figure out how slippery it’s going to be, the air temp, whether to run on the street or side walks, and a host of other things. When all is said and done, it’s really easy to look like this when you finally get dressed:


(Photo credit)

If you’ve done anything like this, you are not alone. I sometimes leave feeling like the Michelin Man. I would say that’s fairly common, but it’s not very practical. Often, by time I’m a mile in, I’m removing layers and sweating like a crazy person, as I unzip my coat halfway, take off my hat, and wish I had someway to take off my sweats and stow them somewhere without inducing hypothermia from the sweating I have previously done to get me to that point. Usually, I’m forced to just wait it out, too warm and uncomfortable.

I think this often happens in our everyday lives, though. Instead of dressing for the elements, we over dress. We pack too much for traveling. We put too much pressure or expectations on the holidays. We bring too much baggage into our relationships. We bring too much shame and guilt with us almost everywhere. And it leaves us feeling stifled and uncomfortable in out own skin. It makes us feel less than adequate and less than lovable. It makes us carry more than we should have to carry.

So, take off some of those layers, even for a little bit this week, and be thankful that you have that option.

Have a happy (and warm) Thanksgiving!

8 Comments on “Overdressing

  1. Ugh winter running gear. Really does make you appreciate the days of shorts. Just sent my sister-in-law home this afternoon with some gear to borrow for Thursday’s Turkey Trot. She’s new to winter running and it is going to be a high of 22F on Thursday.


    • Seriously! It’s so mich simpler when it’s warmer. But, its the ebb and flow of running throughout tht year, I suppose. It can be intimidating for the first time, so it’s nice of you to help your sister-in-law!


  2. The best advice I received on avoiding overdressing for runs was to dress for a run like its 20 degrees warmer that it actually is. Not sure where I heard that, but it works like a charm! The beginning of your run will be a little chilly, but then you will warm, but comfortable for the rest of it. 🙂


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