Runners by nature are a hardy bunch, but blizzard conditions, roads narrowed by enormous snow banks and wind chill factors well below zero make traditional training simply impossible.  So what’s a runner to do?  Here are a few suggestions:
Safety first – slippery road conditions, frostbite potential and low visibility must keep you off the roads and seeking alternatives.
The most obvious is the treadmill – by now referred to as the "dreadmill." It’s boring, and the indoor air is dry, while you use a narrow band of muscles, because the surface is uniform, which also inhibits a running pace based upon how the runner feels.  But it’s still the simplest solution.
Many facilities have indoor tracks.  The downside is that the track is going to be no more than 200-yards at best.  The tight turns could easily cause injury, so frequent changes in direction are helpful, as long as everyone on the track does the same.Traction control is also a key. If the visibility and temperature are reasonable for outdoor running, slippery conditions can still pose a threat.  There are two great alternatives to the everyday running footwear.  The first is the "YakTrax," a simple rubber and wire device that can be attached to any running shoe to provide a greater grip. Think chains on tires. The downside is that it changes the feel of the shoe, and some find that bothersome. 
The second option has become a favorite of mine, the "Icebug," a training shoe from Sweden that features carbide tips on a very grippy sole. Think studded snow tires. Despite its robust structure, it maintains a lightweight feel.  It may be difficult to find at your local running store, but they are available online.
When we get overwhelmed with deep powder conditions, the best thing is to wave the white flag, admit the snow has won and meet it on its own terms. 
I never thought I’d like it, but this year I got my first pair of snowshoes, and I am having a great time.  Sure, it’s not the same as running, but it’s a great strength and endurance workout with the added bonus of a spectacularly beautiful view on those running trails you could never run in the winter.
When temperature and wind bring the readings into single digits or below, frostbite is a serious issue.  Running shoes may not keep your feet warm enough, so pay attention to appropriate socks and consider toe warmer inserts. 
Bare skin is the biggest risk for frostbite, so proper headgear and a facemask is a great idea.  Are you a skier?  Think about using your googles to protect your eyes.
There are terrific technical quality running clothes that can be worn in layers. In very cold weather, the initial coldness at the beginning of a run is sometimes replaced with sweating as the run continues. That can be dangerous if proper clothing isn’t part of your wardrobe.  Additionally, layers can be peeled back or added as body temperature changes.
Get out of dodge may be the most extreme option, but it sure is beginning to sound good, but go to where it’s warm.
Maybe the Beach Boys got it right when they sang,  "Aruba, Jamaica, oh I want to take ya; Bermuda, Bahama, come on pretty mama; Key Largo, Montego, baby why don't we go."
So there you have it.  That’s my full bag of winter running tricks.  The good news, my fellow New Englanders, is that we can certainly claim that we are among the toughest of all runners.  Hey, anybody can get out for a run in San Diego.
Tom Licciardello is a founding member of the Merrimack Valley Striders. Licciardello has participated in 35 Boston’s and 88 marathons altogether. He may be reached at tomlicc@verizon.net.