Tips for running on a rainy day

Published on Wed, Jan 23, 2013
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When the weather takes a turn for the worse, it can be difficult to get motivated to even get off the couch much less go for a run. But if you’re determined to stay fit no matter what the gray skies may bring, here are a few tips from Tracy Niemier at Forward Motion Coaching in Bellingham. 

1. Have good rain gear – find the jacket, hat, gloves and pants that work for you and pay attention to the temperature so you wear the right combination of clothes. Vents are nice so you can let some heat out without letting the rain in.

2. Choose your route – one of the reasons I don’t like to get out the door is because I will be cold at first, or I may dress too warm and then I’m too hot. Choose a route where you can do a small circuit back to your house to drop off a layer when you warm up.

3. Learn to appreciate the types of rain – a soft mist is my favorite rain to run in. I love the feel of it on my cheeks. A really heavy rain removes any thoughts you might have of staying dry, so you are free to play in the puddles like a kid. You are going home wet no matter what. Warm rain makes me feel like part of the outdoors. Cold rain makes me feel tough.

4. Time your run – This works great if your schedule allows for it. Get your running clothes on and then watch out the window for a break in the downpour. When it stops raining, get out there.  Sometimes you’ll get lucky and it won’t start again until you get home. Even if it does start raining while you are out there it doesn’t seem as bad as standing at the window looking at the rain and stepping from your nice dry house into it.

5. Wear a hat – a ball cap with a brim is a must-have for those of us who wear glasses. It’ll keep the rain from dripping into your eyes and help you feel a little less soaked. 

6. Phone up a friend and tell them you are going – either they will think you are nuts (which is a pretty good motivator) or they will say, “What time?  I’ll meet you.”

7. Think about saving on laundry – your clothes are getting a shower the whole time you are out there.  

8. Run on a treadmill –  the less said the better.

9. Become one with the rain – I have never gotten so wet that I never got dry again.  We are waterproof creatures. I don’t wear waterproof gear for running, I just get wet and dry off when I get home.

10. Use the 20 minute rule – I tell myself that I only have to run for 20 minutes. If I run for 20 minutes and I want to come back home, I give myself permission to come back home. I know I can do almost anything for 20 minutes and worst-case scenario, I get a 20-minute run in.