When you undertake training for a marathon or half marathon, you can’t afford to skip workouts because of the rain. You have to learn to be a rain runner. As runners, we know that running often comes down to mind over matter. The body can achieve great things (and we are pretty water-resistant with the right gear) we just have to get in the right mindset.First, let’s talk about gear.
When preparing to hit the pavement for a rainy training run, maybe it’s 4 or 5 miles or even a long run, I like to consult my weather app and think about what layers I want to wear.The old adage that I live by is to dress like it’s 15-20 degrees warmer.
There’s no such thing as bad weather, just soft people
– Bill Bowerman
So if it’s a blustery 42-degree day, I’ll dress like it’s about 60 degrees (accounting for wind-chill too).
Funnily enough, my go-to running jacket is Nike’s Rain Runner. The water just rolls right off of it and it’s super breathable.The key to layering properly for rain running is to find a balance of staying dry, but not overheating. Sometimes running in the rain can be quite warm and overdoing it with gloves, hats, and lots of layers can make your run hot and uncomfortable.A lightweight running hat is great for keeping water out of your eyes and off of your head.
I wear water-resistant shoes, like Nike’s H20 Repel Shield shoes to keep my socks dry when trying to dodge puddles. Even if you land in one, you’ll still stay dry! It’s pretty great. They are also reflective, which is necessary because it’s often dark when we have to squeeze in our runs!Now that you’ve consulted your weather app, you’re layered up properly and are prepared for the lovely rain, let’s get in the right mindset.Rain can be your friend. There’s no such thing as bad weather…
Training in all conditions will make you an unstoppable runner.
We can’t control conditions on race day, when you need to be at your peak, so prepare for anything during training. This is your time to test out different rain gear to see what works for you and what doesn’t.Training in the rain also builds up mental toughness. I can’t be the only one who repeats inspiring quotes in my head while trying to get through a hard workout…right?!
owerman’s quote rings true, especially as an Oregonian. We’re not soft people, we’re runners! If you can tackle training runs, speed workouts, and long runs in the rain, you’ll be prepared for anything that comes your way.Remember, nothing new on race day! Training in the rain and getting your ideal water-resistant layer combination locked in before race day will help you mentally. You’ll know what it feels like to run in light rain, rain that starts in the middle of a run, pouring rain the entire time; anything that mother nature throws at you.Let the motivation of getting out of the rain and into a hot shower be your guiding force for running fast. I actually got a 15K PR while running in one of the rainiest and hilliest races in Portland; the infamous Shamrock Run. At first I was dreading this awful, rainy race. I promise that once you’re in the groove of running, a mile or two in, you’ll be acclimated to the rain.Another tip for rain running, like all running really, is to run with a friend or in a group!
Use local running clubs as accountability partners when the weather is especially rainy.
It feels pretty badass to march through the streets as a pack of rain runners. Plus, that’s the adrenaline of the race; running with others and achieving the same goal of finishing.
Happy training, runners!
See you in Eugene.
By Ashley Anderson