Open Gym.

For ages 13 and older. Friday 7-9 p.m. $14

Regal Gymnastics Academy, Essex. 655-3300.

Frosty Turtle Fun Runs.

Saturdays from 8-9 a.m.

Fleet Feet, Essex Junction. 872-8662.

Winter Solstice.

For grades 6-8. Celebrate the longest night and shortest day of the year with stories, songs, crafts and snacks. 2-3:30 p.m.

Brownell Library, Essex Junction. 878-6955.

Game Day.

Dec. 30 from 1-3 p.m. Come play a variety of board games with your friends and family. All ages.

Essex Free Library, Essex. 879-0313.

Why You Should Run in The Winter

By Lillian Kolbenson
For The Essex Reporter

Winter RunningWinter isn’t a popular season for running. Many find it harder to breathe, but Kris Gleason is actually a fan of running during the winter. She grew up in Essex Junction and now has two kids of her own. Gleason worked in sales at Fleet Feet’s store in Essex Junction, for five years. There she coordinates running groups and helps coach beginner runners.

Gleason picked up running about a year before taking the position with Fleet Feet. Originally she started running to improve her own health. Gleason worked with Kathy Perry, a mentor she met before working at Fleet Feet, who encouraged her to run all kinds of races like 5Ks, 10Ks, obstacle races and even half marathons. Gleason has run in The Block Party 5Ks, Halloween Hustle 5K, Vermont State Police Run, Fairfax Egg Run 10K, Vermont Remembers 10K, Shelburne Half Marathon, Charlotte Covered Bridges Half Marathon, Brian Bill Memorial Obstacle Race, Spartan Sprints and Spartan Super Obstacle Race.

“You should be active before you get old and it’s too late,” said Kris Gleason.

Through Road Runners Club of America she became a certified coach in August 2014 she began motivating other runners to do what she has done by helping them set goals.

“I help to motivate others by remembering what it feels like to be where they’re at,” Kris added.

  • Strengthen Your Lungs. Being outside in sub-zero temperatures is hard on your lungs. By continuing to run outside as the temperatures drop, your lungs will adjust. Over time you will develop stronger lung capacity and the ability to breathe deeper in the cold.
  • No Need to Reset. Every winter you do not run is a spring you have to reset your level of running. Keeping a consistent running habit will also ensure that you do not put undue strain on your body in the spring. Running throughout the year will help to keep your muscles strong.
  • Your Health. Running strengthens the immune system. If you’re able to run outside during the daylight hours, you’ll also soak up some Vitamin D from the sun, which is a mood-booster too.
  • Work Different Muscles. Winter offers more of a strength workout because of the snow and other weather conditions.
  • Motivation. Fleet Feet offers a free running group called the Frosty Turtles that kicked off Nov. 1. Runs take place on Saturdays at 8 a.m. and continue through the winter.