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Running in the Rain

Now that Spring is here and the weather is getting warmer, runners are getting out and running more often.  Unfortunately, Spring also tends to be the rainiest time of the year. As a  runner, you’ve undoubtedly had to deal with running in the rain at one point or another.   Some people don’t mind it, some really hate, a few actually enjoy it, but most try to avoid it.  Before you let the rain ruin your next run, let’s take a look at some ways to better handle it!

The first thing to consider when running in the rain is the temperature.  While running in the rain on a warm or hot day can be exhilarating and not a bother at all, running in a cold rain can be absolutely miserable.  I know I’ve personally run a few times in the pouring rain where the temperature was in the mid 30’s, and it was honestly the coldest I’ve ever felt. It was even worse than running in single digit temperatures! Cold and rainy is when you really have to be careful how you dress.  A water resistant outer layer like a  jacket or tech shirt is crucial to keeping you warm and dry.  Once your clothes get soaked, you will become even colder – so wear gloves and a hat that repels water as much as possible, too.  If it’s cold enough for freezing rain that makes the ground icy and slick, you should consider running inside or taking the day off.  It isn’t worth the risk of injury.

In a warmer rain, running should not be quite as difficult, but I would still recommend wearing light, moisture wicking clothes so they don’t hold the water and weigh you down.  Don’t forget to use Body Glide; the extra moisture from the rain can cause chaffing.  It’s also a good idea to wear a running hat to keep the rain off your face, especially if you wear glasses.  Also, don’t forget to hydrate! Even though the sun isn’t out on a warm, rainy day, you’re still sweating and need to replenish your fluids.

Racing in the rain can be a difficult task;  Try to stay as warm and dry as possible before the race. Being wet and shivering can cost you a lot of your energy and hurt your performance.  Be careful taking sharp turns since the roads will be wet and slippery, and racing shoes tend to have smoother outsoles than training shoes.  Try not to let the rain tense up your form; if you feel tension in your neck and shoulders, try to loosen up to avoid slowing your pace.  Don’t forget to bring dry clothes to change into as soon as the race is over.

You’ll also want to consider your visibility when running in the rain.  You will be less visible to cars in bad weather, so wear reflective and bright colored clothing.  Try to give yourself extra space on the shoulder of the road in case the rain affects drivers. 

 If you don’t have the right apparel or gear for running on those rainy, Spring days, stop in the store and we’ll make sure you have everything you need to stay comfortable while running in the rain! 

About the author: A.J. is the Store Manager at AppRunCo – Altoona. He lives in Altoona and has been a competitive runner for over 20 years.