Project Snow: Stay Active and Fit This Winter!


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Project Snow: Stay Active and Fit This Winter!

Behold the SNOW WARRIOR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Mother Nature’s got nothing on us this winter!

What is Project Snow?

Project Snow is a personal challenge to myself and all of my readers to stay committed to exercise (and have fun doing it) this Fall and Winter.

Specifically, I am challenging myself and all willing participants to commit to a minimum of 1-2 outdoor workouts throughout the Fall and Winter seasons. This will be a huge challenge for myself (and many of you) living in a Northern climate!


Why am I doing this? Am I nuts?!

I definitely think I am crazy for doing this challenge and I will think that even more once the bad weather really hits. I do not have a good track record with respect to exercising outdoors when it is cold out. I’m a wuss! I have always opted to stay inside a warm gym during the cold months, but I often find that my mood takes a huge hit when I am indoors for such a long stretch of time. Even with getting in my indoor workouts, I find myself feeling quite low over the winter. I strongly suspect that this is due to not getting outside enough. Fresh air and natural light can do wonders for the mood, especially when it gets dark at 5pm!



Will you ‘attack’ winter with me? :D

My new motto is this:

For most types of weather, I will prepare for it and dress accordingly. Nature is to be enjoyed in all seasons, shapes, and forms and not only during 25C, sunny days.

Wait, isn’t working out in really bad weather…DANGEROUS?!

Yes, it sure is. And that is why I am not going to workout in dangerous conditions! I want to be very clear about this too. In no way, shape, or form am I encouraging you to go outside when it is not safe to do so whether that be due to extreme cold, darkness, or slippery conditions. As always, use your good judgment about it.

We have to be smart about Project Snow. When it is safe for me to do so, I will be getting outside for some activity and only when it is safe. If you feel like it is not safe to venture outdoors for a workout, please do not do so! I certainly will not be running outside when it is slippery or too cold outside.

How does Project Snow work?

Project Snow was created so that all of us can share our outdoor exercise tips and tricks with one another, in addition to encouraging each other to stay active and positive until Spring time. If we BOND together over these cold months, we can not only keep our spirits up, but stay fit and learn something while we are at it!

Over the fall and winter months, I will be providing tips and tricks that I learn along the way. I will also be asking questions for discussion so everyone can offer their own advice and experiences!

What type of activities can I do? I don’t like running!

You don’t have to run by any means! In fact, on really cold or snowy days, I won’t be running either. You can do anything from walking, hiking, snowshoeing, snowboarding, shoveling snow, skiing, etc etc! The sky is the limit! As long as you are getting outside and getting your heart rate up it is ALL good. :D

How do I participate?

All you have to do is commit to keeping active outdoors this Fall and Winter and make sure to stay up to date on my Project Snow posts. I also encourage you to contribute in the discussion and let everyone know how things are going over on your end! Tell us what the weather is like where you live and what you are doing to stay active!

What if I live in a warm climate? Can I still participate?

Of course you can! Just be sure to invite me to your place this winter! ;)

Project Snow Tip #1: LAYER YOUR CLOTHING!

IMG_6867 IMG_6868 IMG_6869

This was me before my run yesterday! It was cold out (around 4C/39F), and I really didn’t want to run outside. After receiving a few encouraging Tweets, I decided to bundle up and get out there!

Bottom layer: Sports Bra tank

Middle Layer: Shape Jacket

Top Layer: Shell/Windbreaker jacket

I also wore some cotton gloves (yes, with the hole! haha) and a hat. I like hats in the cold temperatures because they keep the heat in.

The run:

  • Distance: 3.4 miles
  • Duration: 30:47 mins
  • Avg speed: 9:10 min/mile
  • Max Heart rate: 176 bpm
  • Avg HR: 165 bpm

I love layering, but I always have one major problem: What do I do with the layers once I warm up and get too hot? I wanted to take my jacket off, but I had no where to put it so I left it on!

I would appreciate to hear from you guys on this! Leave a comment below if you’d like to join in on the fun.

Project Snow is Sketchie approved! He says he will cheer me on from his warm bed. ;)


What do you do with your layers? Tie around the waist? I would think this would get in the way. Share your ideas!


Project Snow’s next topic will be a tip I learned on how to make it much easier getting outside when you don’t want to.

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{ 113 comments… read them below or add one }

Jessica @ How Sweet It Is October 15, 2009

Is there possibly somewhere that you can drop your jacket halfway and pick it back up and tie around the waist?? Hmm..nevermind that sounds like alot of work! I hate working out with something tied around my waist because it always keeps falling off. I will like hearing these suggestions!!


Vanessa (Last Night's Leftovers) October 15, 2009

Haha, love it! I don’t have a choice but to go out in the winter…my beagle needs to be walked, even if I’m a big wuss about all of that snow on the ground :P


Kate B October 15, 2009

Hey Angela! I live in Ontario too and it is already getting really chilly here! I do love running outside in this weather, it is my favourite time of year! However, it does get challenging when the snow starts to build up and I would love to participate in Project Snow because I know that come winter I will want to only workout on my treadmill, but going outside is a good challenge!
Good luck to all of us who live in a cooler climate!


Amanda October 15, 2009

Love this idea – motivation and support to run when it’s freezing!!

Hopefully you’ll be running in a familiar area, and in that case, I usually hide my layer in a bush along the way or something and then go pick it up in the car later. OR you could plan a route that has laps (a track?) and grab it once you’re done. Around the waist is annoying!!


Karin October 15, 2009

Project snow is such a fantastic idea! I also have no motivation in winter (I live in Switzerland) as it’s mostly cold and dark outside.. About the warm & then too hot problem: I always wear a jacket (like here: and just pull the zipper down a little bit. If it’s winter I really like fingerless gloves (are they even called like that? lol) and bandeaus because they still allow the fingers and head to cool down. And also: I once read that it’s best when you get outside and feel a little bit cold at first. So when you get warm during your run you don’t get too hot.


Angela (Oh She Glows) October 15, 2009

great tips!


Lauren October 15, 2009

I live in the Chicagoland area so it’s already cold! I like wearing a puffy down vest because my arms are free but it really keeps my core warm. I just start to unbutton it when I get warm. If I’m wearing a zip sweatshirt, I take it and kind of tuck it in half and wrap tightly around my waist. I tuck it in half so none of it’s hanging and getting in my way. Does that make sense? I have a question-I carry my phone and even keys with mase on me for safety reasons, do you do anything like this? What do you do with it? I put them in my pocket but sometimes it’s really annoying.


Angela (Oh She Glows) October 15, 2009

I put everything in my pocket too…and yes it gets annoying. I hear the Spibelts are good? I think thats what they are called anyways!


Shelly October 15, 2009

I have a spibelt and it is great! It stretches enough to hold my blackberry, keys, and a gel pretty easily. It is also very comfortable and doesn’t really move a lot unless I’ve got something heavy like a camera in there. Of course, it still looks somewhat dorky. :)


Ryan @ Greens for Good October 15, 2009

When I was running last winter (it DOES get cold in FL) I followed the “dress as if it is 20 degrees-F warmer out than it actually is” rule. So if it was 40 degrees out, I dressed for 60 degrees and it worked really well to avoid having to remove layers.


Ryan @ Greens for Good October 15, 2009

I believe the Celsius conversion for this is about 11 degrees…


Carolyn October 15, 2009

I’m scared of Ontario winter this year :( BC has wimpified me for winter the past few years!

I tie the jacket up around my waist or partially unzip whatever I can (without making my clothes into wind sails). I thought having my jacket flapping around my hips would be awful and distracting, but I hardly even notice it’s there. Alternatively, I plan my route to circle a drop-spot (like my house or the Running Room store) mid-run. And pockets in my clothes are of course used for ditching gloves if needed.


Angela (Oh She Glows) October 15, 2009

LOL @ windsails ;)


Kristin October 15, 2009

I have read that when you go out for a run in the winter you should be a little chilly because you will warm up. Not sure if that means leaving one layer off or what! Just an idea!



Nikki T October 15, 2009

I follow Ryan’s above comment of the 20 degrees warmer thing too…and I know I will get hot as I run, but it’s just SO hard to get out there in the snow while you’re feeling chilly at first!


janetha October 15, 2009

hooray i already bought my season pass so i will be participating in this challenge by snowboarding 3+ times a week! and i love to hike in the snow as well, it is SO much harder than regular hiking! but the reward is so much bigger.. you get to snowboard down a glorious mountain of fresh snow :) LOVE the photos of you all bundled up. and of sketchie of course <3


Gillian October 15, 2009

I usually dress so I am a bit colder starting out because I know I will turn into an over after about 10 minutes! I usually find I need to take gloves off after a bit because my hands will start to sweat while running. You skin is going to get super dry from sweating and being in cold (well I find mine does anyways) so finding good moisturizer is key! Other then running I like to snowboard and ice skate outside to enjoy the outdoors in the winter!


Shannon (The Daily Balance) October 15, 2009

hahaha those photos are classic! I will definitely join in the challenge! GREAT idea ;)


Diana October 15, 2009

Lmao, that first picture cracked me up :D
I’ll just keep going to the gym during the winter, though :P


Karen October 15, 2009

I dress as light as possible for my runs, and the first mile or so is cold and awful. For example, in 39 degree weather I’ll wear shorts and a short-sleeved shirt with a long-sleeved shirt over it. I’ll wear a headband to keep my ears warm. It’s miserable at first and then it suddenly turns wonderful–once I warm up it feels perfect. I’ll often shed the long-sleeved shirt and tie it around my waist.


Nikki T October 15, 2009

First of all, that Snow Warrior outfit is SWEET! Haha!
I’m totally IN on Project Snow- I’m definately going to need help getting motivated to get my foot out the door in the snow, but I plan on doing it!! I’ve signed up for the Resolution Run on Jan 1st, 2010…I thought that would keep me motivated to run outdoors in the cold…?!?
Yesterday, I will admit, I skipped my run. It was about -4 C and windy with show blowing horizontally (Honestly, where did FALL go?!) It’s supposed to warm up this weekend, so I’m hoping that the slippery road clears up a bit so I can get out there. I agree- no running when it’s DANGEROUS!
I usually make my last layer a windbreaker, it’s light and easier to deal with when it’s tied around my waist once I get too hot.
I just got my SPIbelt in the mail (after reading Caitlin’s review on it…yeah, I’m a sucker for advertising!). Haven’t tried it yet, but I did shove my Blackberry in it yesterday and it fits! I normally don’t run with my phone, but I figure when its slippery and I’m running alone, I want to be able to contact someone if I did happen to fall or get hurt.

Looking forward to the post on how to get outside when you really don’t want to!!


Katie (A Running Start) October 15, 2009

I love the idea of Project Snow!! I’m in COLD Wisconsin and I’m so taking this challenge!! LOVE IT! :)


Laura October 15, 2009

I usually leave a layer off – if it’s really cold out, to the point where I’d be uncomfortable for the first part of my run, I’ll get fully dressed for outside and do a quick warm up inside, just jogging around my apartment and doing some jumping jacks. Since I’ve got my outside gear on, my body heats up really quickly, and I take that warmth with me when I get outside. :)


Nikki T October 15, 2009

Good idea! I may have to steal this one…


Shelly October 15, 2009

I am actually really excited b/c I live in New Orleans (and yes, you are welcome to visit and come run- may I suggest the Mardi Gras 1/2 or full Marathon in Feb.? The weather here is beautiful in February!) and I just realized that I managed to run all summer long, despite the horrible heat and now, it’s going to get easier for the next 6 months! I will definitely be out and about, although it probably won’t be snowing here. I generally wear a T-shirt and long pants to run in the winter. I find that I’m a little chilly at the start, but once I get going, I get hot and would rather not wear a long sleeve layer b/c tying it around my waist, while doable, isn’t incredibly comfortable.


Leah @ L4L October 15, 2009

My fiance wears a water belt when he runs and if he starts shedding layers, he ties them around the belt at the small of his back.


Valerie October 15, 2009

lmao that picture is gold! love it!

In the winter I typically go for brisk walks. Not as much of a workout as a run, but I try to choose a pace that elevates my heart rate. Something else I like to do in the winter (because I’m a kid at heart) is just to go outside and play in the snow! Throw on some snow pants and your usual gear and just go play, make a fort, snowman, whatever. Tobogganing is also great, especially if you choose a pretty steep hill!

As for layering, I try to just brave the cold for the first 5-10 minutes until I’m warm since I tend to get pretty warm while working out! I typically wear a thin tank or tee, light hoodie and then either a thin windproof jacket or a thicker hoodie depending on the temp.


Jennifer Q October 15, 2009

I can’t believe its that cold already! I live in Mississippi and its been in the 80s everyday this week.


Amy October 15, 2009

I do the bulk of my long distance training in the cold months. I always run the Hypothermic Half in January… and a half in May.

I always dress for 10 degrees warmer than it actually is.

Typically I wear a long sleeved technical T, a a technical T, and my running shell. Usually I just wear a pair of lulus on the bottom, the odd time (-20) I will wear some wicking long johns (i got mine at costco for $16!!) which are great. I’m always plenty warm!

A wickable touque is a lifesaver too! Dollar store gloves are great too… my hands always get too hot while running. So they always end up off. I don’t feel too guilty losing them knowing that I only paid $1 for them!

Another good tip, is to wear your fuel belt under your jacket as they tend to freeze.

You will love winter running. I promise.


Laura@FindingAHealthyBalance October 15, 2009

I love the “snow” picture! Was that taken recently? I can’t imagine a scene like that as I live in Florida and it is still so hot here…….=( Great layering, wish I could do it!

=) Laura @ Finding A Healthy Balance…..after a 100+ POUND weight loss!


Diana October 15, 2009

you could chart a route starting from your house (or some other starting point) that’s half the distance of the total run you want to do and run it twice. That way you could take one or more articles of clothing off at the half way point and not have to worry about going back to get them later.


lena October 15, 2009

Ha ha! i love those pics! you are funny! btw, i think i would brisk walk in winter too if i had winter but for now, i do whatever i can even if it’s rain as long as it isn’t a downpour. but the weather here is amazing… Amazingly hot!!! so strip down to your swimsuits! :) or tank tops! best way to exercise in hot climate!!


Abby Grisham-Tichenor October 15, 2009

This is awesome! I have been trying to figure out how to get outside for workouts. ( I shovel snow for a good workout.) Especially since winter seems to be coming earlier this year; (where did Fall in the Midwest go?? Was it ever here??) I want to make certain I am able to get outside and get that mood up!


Mellissa October 15, 2009

I am a cold wimp! I love this challenge but tend to hide inside during the winter. Living in Minneapolis makes winter workouts tough when its -20F! While I will not do outdoor workouts every week I am committed to trying 3 new outside activities this winter.


Kristie Lynn October 15, 2009

I’m so in. This morning it was 39 degrees with a bit of rain and wind but I went out there and did 3 miles :) I wore a short sleeve tech t with a non-cotton zip up sweatshirt over it on the top (along with a cheapo hat from Old Navy and gloves from Target that were only 75 cents), and running tights with pj shorts over them (I’m just a wee bit self conscious about how running tights look on me still). I was plenty warm – just needed to take off the hat and gloves a mile in, which I just stuffed in my pockets. It was a good refresher for me in how tough it is to get out there, but how good it feels once you’re going. :-D


Sarah @ The Foodie Diaries October 15, 2009

Hahaha I love your snowsuit montage!! And the sketchy pics!

I have the same layering dilemma! I’ll be checking your comments for advice!!


Barbara October 15, 2009

I’m in!

I live in a 4 seasons a year climate which means we get hot summers (around 30 – 35C), but also cold and dark winters (not as cold as yours, but the temperatures do drop to about -10C below zero). So project snow is definitely a go for me (I also really don’t like gyms)

Right now I’m still running outside (despite the killer wind), but I’m as baffled about layers as you are. What is working for me right now is wearing less layers but adding a scarf (or something around my neck) and a hat. I find it that I’m only really cold for the first 5 to 10 minutes of the run (now that the temps are not really low) so the hat and the scarf keep me warm in the beginning and they’re easy to tie around the waist or basically get rid of.

Oh I can’t do this due to living in an apartment building but you could totally run by your house once and get rid of the “extra” stuff. It might mess up with your route but for a while (until it gets so cold you’ll need all the layers you can put on) it might be worth it?

Oh and love the pictures in this post. Hilarious!


Crystal October 15, 2009

Living in CO I have started many a run in layers and ended in a t shirt! I usually tie long sleeves around my waist in a double knot (there have been times I ended up with 3 shirts around my waist!) or, if I am on a longer run, I will tie layers around the straps on my CamelBack. It is def. not ideal but better that freezing in the begining or overheating at the end. I always think I look ridiculous until I see that everyone else has don the same thing!


Michelle October 15, 2009

Great Post! I live here in Chicago and like your home it gets super cold here! Yes layering is key. And I have tied my top layer around my waist a few times before. In fact I ran a half like that before b/c I liked my shirt to much to throw it away! But like a previous comment I too try to dress like it’s a little warmer outside than it actually is. I’m pretty cold natured but when running i tend to warm up super quickly. Dry fit shirts are key as well as hat and gloves. :)


Cecilia October 15, 2009

Can I join the project even if I don’t expect having trouble getting outdoors this fall/winter? I do live in a cold, dark climate but I ran through all of last winter, at least 3 times a week (love the snow!), so I don’t think it’ll be that hard to do it this year as well, but it would be nice to have the extra incentive that project snow will provide, especially since I’ll be training for a marathon all through the winter season.

As for clothing, I find that it’s important to make sure that all your layers are made of wicking/breathing fabrics, otherwise it’s easy to overheat once you get into the workout. As for the jacket, when I get too warm I unzip my jacket, which usually helps. If it’s still too hot, I just take it off and tie it around my hips. Yeah, it might not be the best look, but who cares?


Tasha - The Clean Eating Mama October 15, 2009

Thanks for linking to my giveaway! :)

I have yet to master running outside. I am actually terrified of being hit bye cars :( – I hear a new story at least a few times a month where a runner or a biker has been hit in the Seattle area. It’s tragic!


Jess October 15, 2009

Count me in! I’m glad to see that shoveling snow ‘counts’! I have a feeling I”ll be doing lots of that this year :)

I just ran outside for the first time in a LONG while.It was only a mile, but it was drizzling and only about 40 degrees. I think I need to invest in some actual running clothes if I’m going to keep that up. It was quite chilly. Gloves are a MUST.


Susan October 15, 2009

I just ran 5 miles in -1C weather!! I wore a longsleeve turtleneck I bought at the Running Room with long spandex capris, a running hat, and gloves. It was perfect! I actually took the gloves off a few times. My warm-up was COLD, but 5 minutes into running, I felt very comfortable. Although, my ears were definitely cold by the end of it… ear muffs maybe??

Oh, and you forgot skating and sledding in your list! I LOVE skating on outdoor rinks in the winter. And you can never outgrow sledding – climbing back up that hill is a tough workout! :P


katie October 15, 2009

love the idea of project snow! i had wanted to continue running outside during the winter at least 1 or 2 days a week, and hopefully this will keep me motivated when its cold and dark out ;)


jessica October 15, 2009

I’m definitely on board!! Ottawa is even colder than TO on most days sadly.


Mary October 15, 2009

I am a WUSS too…I can’t convince myself to get outside to run in the cold. But I am up for the challenge. I find my mood slips during the winter months and am sure it is lack of fresh air. I’ll be bundling up and getting out there.


Dori October 15, 2009

I hate being cold so much. I look forward to your posts on Project Snow because they might inspire me to get outside . . . but I think my workouts will turn to the boring treadmill. I already did this week :(


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