Hardy weather breeds hardy people but running in the rain can be a challenge for even the strongest among us; that icy sting, the drenched feeling, but behind it all is the sense of being at one with nature.
So, if you’re ready to brave the elements and take your running to the next level, here are our top tips for how to run in the rain while keeping healthy.
Top tips for running in the rain
Before stepping out into the cold, first things first, you need to make sure you’re prepared and that means dressing right.
Layers lock in heat keeping you warm and toasty. Hot air gets trapped between your multiple levels of clothing, insulating your body.
But, why not one big jumper? When you run you gain heat, which is great if you’re running outside, but isn’t so useful once you’re back indoors. Just as layers lock in heat, taking off the layers gradually reduces the amount for heat slowly, so it doesn’t shock your system.
2. Peaked hat
A running essential; perfect for sunshine or rain. Although a peaked hat may be busy in summer preventing you from being blinded by the sun’s rays, in the rainy season it also serves its purpose keeping the rain off your head and out of your face.
3. Don’t overdress
Although adding 10+ layers may sound like an excellent idea as you move from the coziness of your bed to the wild, wet outdoors, do be careful that you aren’t overdressing. Avoid super thick and heavy clothes that can quickly become drenched, leaving you warm and sweaty.
Instead aim for light layered fabrics that keep you warm, not suffocated.
Train for your terrain
Knowledge is everything, so before you start, it’s best to know where you’re going.
4. Knowing your terrain
Whether running in the city or in the country, before you set foot outside, it’s time to plan your route to make sure it is safe and suitable in not so ideal weather.
For city runners, aim to avoid areas prone to floods and slippery parts of the city, especially those with steep slopes. Focus on flat districts where rainwater doesn’t tend to gather.
Country runners should take extra care to avoid areas known for mudslides, marshy ground, and mountainy terrain. Particularly in rainy weather, these types of areas could prove additionally dangerous, so put your safety first.
5. Watching your step
Even if you’ve run a course 105 times, don’t become complacent; watch out for potholes, slippery areas, and terrain changes.
Rain running can also present some additional challenges in your stopping distance, just like your car in wet weather, the stopping distance when jogging in the rain is increased two-fold, so be careful and take your time.
Morning run? Check. Once you’ve returned from braving the elements, it’s time to get back home and warmed up so you can stay healthy.
6. Change your clothes ASAP
Get out of those wet clothes ASAP. There are no acceptable excuses ever on this one.
As your body starts to cool down, so do your wringing wet clothes, and if you don’t get yourself changed pronto, you risk falling ill.
So, before you do anything else, it’s time to get changed into something warm and dry.
7. Dry out your shoes
If you’re like most rain runners, the first thing you want to do once you make it in the door is to kick those squelchy shoes off your feet; and that’s a good choice. But don’t forget about them altogether.
Set your shoes on a radiator or heater to dry out for the next session. Your feet will thank you for this one later.
8. Cup of hot tea
You’ve done the hard work, now it’s time to relax. After an icy rain run, one of the best ways to do so is with a healthy cup of tea.
So, best get that kettle on. For extra health points, consider adding honey and lemon to the mix to boost your immune system; keeping you happy and healthy.
When not to run during the rain
Running in the rain can be a fun, thrilling activity that brings you closer to nature, while keeping you healthy. That said, there’s one absolutely time when it’s really best to stay home and put your feet up.
That time is during a thunderstorm. So, if you predict lightening in the near future, best avoid the shock, stay inside and stick to tip number 8––a nice cup of tea.