The Art Of Running In The Rain

When I first started running this year, I was still under the impression that people didn’t run in the rain. There were the occasional crazies, but that most runners just avoided it. Who would want to run in the rain? You get WET. Bah. But as my training went on for my half-marathon, I realized that there are nights you “have” to run and if there’s no danger (lightning, etc) then you just “have” to get out. And man, my first run in the rain? I was SO dreading it. I thought, “THIS IS GOING TO SUCK ROYAL DONKEY BALLS.” And you know what? It did NOT. I actually enjoyed it because it was a break from the heat and it was simply…fun.

Since then I’ve had several rain runs and I’ve enjoyed them all. I think if it was really cold or if I had to run really far (longer than an hour) then I’d probably hate it, but so far? I’ve liked them all.

Last night was kinda chilly, but no rain. I met my group at Fleet Feet for a 6-mile run and the second we walked out the door the bottom fell out of the sky. Since it was already chilly that first mile was TREACHEROUS. And we were running on a busy road so we were dealing with the extra splashing from the cars, on top of the rain from the sky. I had my windbreaker and my hood on, but I was still thinking, “Aw, HELL NO. This shit is for the BIRDS. AND THE CRAZY PEOPLE.”

But after we got off that main road and turned into the neighborhoods? It was like a new world. It was raining and chilly but OH MY GOD, it felt so good. We sped up a bit and went up and down hills and splashed in puddles and I LOVED EVERY STEP. I was running with my main coach from our training group who is GREAT to run with, but the whole run was just…GREAT. We rounded back to Fleet Feet and she pointed out we had only gone four miles so we looped around another hill and hit the greenway and took 6 miles back home to the store, making sure to stomp in the puddles in the parking lot along the way.

SO MUCH FUN.

And then it occurred to me. Maybe it’s not that I was wrong in the beginning. Maybe it still is just a select few crazy people who run in the rain. Maybe I’m just now one of those crazy people. But let me tell you? After last night? I don’t feel crazy…I feel like I know a secret that the other people don’t know. That yeah, my clothes are nasty and I can’t wear my soaking shoes to boot camp today, but running in the rain? IS DAMN FUN. It’s the closest I’ve felt to truly being a kid in YEARS. Not even swinging on the playground (which I do often) is quite as joyful as running in the rain. I highly suggest EVERYONE run in the rain whenever they can. I look forward to rain runs now, as long as it’s not also FREEZING. Because those people running in the rain when it’s freezing outside?

Those people are actually crazy.

8 Comments

  • Lisa

    I HATE running in the rain, not that I actually do it, but my son runs on his schools track and Cross country team We had the rainiest summer and fall EVER and I can’t begin to tell you how many pairs of sneaker we went through. All that getting soaked and putting in the dryer is not good for the sneakers…causes them to fall apart quicker. he goes through them fast enough as it is. And he has practice every day and we have to make sure he has a good pair for the meets that also need to be cleaned because it was such a muddy season. And good running sneakers are not cheap. Not to mention distance spikes, sprinting spikes, ….socks, underarmor…who knew running was such an expensive sport?!?!?

    • Zoot

      For me a lot of the expense comes from trial and error. In the beginning it takes awhile to build up that base of gear and sometimes you have to try different things. It took me a few tries to settle on a way to run with water. And I tried things like running skirts and HATED them. So sometimes I spend money and then I hate what I bought 🙂

  • Whitney

    So, my comment has nothing to do with running because well, I don’t run… BUT! Your title is almost the exact title of one of my favorite books “The Art of Racing in the Rain” which maybe you meant for it to be because you’ve read the book… but if you did not, I highly suggest you read this book. It’s a tear jerker and it’s not YA (not that you ONLY love YA, I just know you have a soft spot for it) but the title reminded me how much I loved the book and thought I’d share.

    Otherwise, this comment is totally pointless. Unless you find the book, read it and love it, then, it served a purpose after all.

    Also: I admire runners. SO, there’s that. 🙂

    • Zoot

      I HAVE READ IT! Hence the title 🙂 Was wondering if anyone else knew it! I don’t usually like gimicky authors, but I got past that easy enough and really loved that book!

  • Jessie S.

    You should get a boot dryer for your shoes. They’re pretty cheap. I bought my husband one for Christmas last year.

  • Kathleen

    All the runners I know here in CO say running in the rain is the best form. However, A) they run and B) many of them do triathalons, so… they’re all NUTS.

  • anna

    What is the temperature in Alabama in December?? Girl running in the rain in the 30’s, 40’s or 50 degree temps would make me cry! In the summer I could get into it, but December??? hell no.

  • Kate

    I love the joy in this post. It *almost* makes me want to try running in the rain. Almost. But I’m not crazy. 🙂