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How to actually enjoy running in the rain

I’ve always loved running in the rain – maybe because I grew up in the desert where it was rare to have a rainy run? Rainy runs are not rare in the South, and they’re a lot easier to enjoy if you know what to wear when running in the rain. I often get asked by Instagram followers after posting a rainy day IG story, What should I wear to run in the rain? Here are my tips to help you sing & dance, errr, run in the rain! 😉

boston-marathon-finish-line

Pretty soon we’ll be turning to tips for running in the cold, but I keep hearing we’re supposed to have a rainy fall. And heck, our last winter was pretty rainy – I did multiple 20 milers in pouring rain and wind training for the Boston Marathon, which turned out to be VERY good training given the conditions!

Running in the Rain

running in the rain

 

What to wear when running in the rain

  • a brimmed hat or visor
    • This helps keep the rain out of your eyes, which gets annoying very quickly, and helps you see where the heck you’re going in a downpour
    • If it’s under 40 degrees, you may want to layer a beanie or ear warmer over your hat. It’s a sexy look, to be sure. 😉 And it’s what I did for the 2018 Boston Marathon; I didn’t ditch my beanie until the last 2 miles.
  • a fitted shirt made of wicking material
    • No cotton allowed! It gets soaked and very heavy, making things miserable
    • I prefer form-fitted shirts since they don’t stretch out as much or flop around when wet
  • thin socks
  • a vest with lights
    • Even if it’s not very dark, this helps you stand out more to cars. I recommend this Tracer 360 vest since you change it to flash (vs. a solid light) to get drivers’ attention.
  • a water resistant rain jacket
    • I love my Patagonia Houdini since it’s extremely lightweight, but traps heat well to keep me warm. And I can layer it over long sleeves if it’s extra cold.
    • You do NOT want something that’s completely impermeable (like a rain slicker) because you need something that breathes.  (Bonus: that Houdini is great for breaking the wind!)
    • I didn’t wear my Houdini in the 2018 Boston Marathon, which had the worst weather on record, because I was worried I would get too hot and I didn’t want to ditch it on the course. But, I definitely should have worn it. I kept my long-sleeved shirt on the entire time!

boston-marathon-natick

 

Can you get sick if you run in the rain?

This is probably different for everyone, but some studies show that a lower body temperature can make you more prone to catching a virus. I also prioritize getting warm and dry IMMEDIATELY after I finish a run. Pack dry clothes and dry shoes to change into post-run, if you’re not going home immediately.

 Other tips for when you run in the rain!

  • try not to worry about pace! go by effort or try to focus on having fun rather than going fast
  • pull the insoles out of your shoes when you finish to let them dry
  • put newspaper in your wet running shoes to help dry them out
  • don’t assume cars see you!
  • appreciate the feeling of being outdoors in the elements. we spend so much of our lives inside – remember that it’s a gift to experience nature in all her conditions!
  • leave the earbuds at home – you’ll want to pay attention to traffic more closely and you don’t want the rain to fritz them out (and unless you have earbuds with hooks, they may fall out anyway)
  • if you run with your phone, put it in a plastic baggie before you stick it in your flipbelt (or whatever you use to carry your phone)

What are your tips to make running in the rain more fun?

 

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4 Comments

  • Reply
    Lynne B. Smith
    at

    Do you think those socks really help with plantar fasciitis? I’m struggling with PF in both feet right now. Do they run true to size?

    • Reply
      Teri [a foodie stays fit]
      at

      I’m not sure if they help, necessarily, but they certainly FEEL better than my other socks! The increased compression seems to relieve some of the tension. And yes, true to size!

  • Reply
    Brenda
    at

    …hehe…says the girl who doesn’t wear glasses. I cannot stand to run in the rain, but dream of it.

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