The Everyman: Getting Ready For Cold-Weather Training

The winter is a great time to move ahead of everyone else and get in some base mileage. Photo:

Winter is a time to get in some base training for the next season.

It’s that time of year again.

The time when trees shed their leaves (for those of us who live in colder climates), the time when advertisements for Black Friday sales start to appear everywhere, and the time when shorts and t-shirts are replaced with long pants and sweaters.

It’s also the time to start thinking about next year. More specifically, our race schedules.

This is important for a few reasons:

— Some races fill up quickly so you need to be ready to sign up and pay the entry fee.

— If you’re planning to compete in two or three big races plus some smaller “B” races along the way, a well-organized plan is needed — and that takes time to put together.

— It provides us with a goal and the motivation to do more than sit on the couch all winter while eating cookies and watching re-runs of “The Christmas Story.”

The third item is most applicable to me.

My preliminary plan for 2014 includes two marathons — one early, one late — and multiple triathlons. My first 26.2-mile jaunt for the year takes place in March, which means I don’t have much time to mess around or slack off. Rain, snow, sleet or shine, I need to train all winter.

RELATED: Staying Warm During Winter Runs

Now, this doesn’t mean I’ll be running five days a week in 30-degree temperatures. I’ll have to balance swimming, biking, running and strength training, which will certainly pose some challenges. This is why I’m going to employ a marathon training plan that incorporates three runs per week. That’s it. I’ll get the rest of my endurance building through swimming and cycling.

Thinking big picture, my long-term plan is to race an Ironman triathlon in 2015. So next year’s role will be to build a massive base for that and to get some more race experience.

Everyone is different and we all have different motivations. For me, I need a goal — even if it’s a 10K on Thanksgiving morning (that reminds me, I need to start training for that). If there’s a race on my calendar, I’ll have the motivation to get out and train.

What are your 2014 goals? Leave a comment below or Tweet me @jason_devaney1.

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