Why don’t more people run in the rain? This is a question I’ve asked myself for over thirty years, and today, I’m putting it online, hoping to get some answers.
Sure, I understand why people avoid the rain if they’re dressed up or going someplace where they won’t be able to change their clothes. Sitting around in wet clothing all day or night sucks. But most runners I’ve met over the years get pretty sweaty when they exercise and take a shower afterwards anyway, so what’s the big deal with getting wet outdoors? Especially when there’s a beautiful, warm rain, like today?
Yesterday–a shiny, sunny morning–when the dog and I went out for our morning jog, we saw at least twenty runners. We live in a highly populated area, and we’re lucky to have some great trails nearby. In fact, these trails are so busy on sunny days that they can actually be dangerous. (The danger comes from bikers who don’t always play nice with people on foot, but let’s not talk about that.) Today, however, we literally had the trails to ourselves, as we saw absolutely no other runners. And it was far from the first time. Ever since I started running in high school, I’ve noticed this odd phenomenon. People love to run in the sunshine, but most take a day off or exercise indoors whenever the sky decides to unleash some water.
I’ll admit that getting started isn’t always easy. That first jump out of the nice, dry house into the rain is a little like plunging into a swimming pool. Despite the fact that our bodies are more than fifty percent water, most of us have a natural aversion to that sudden change from dry to wet. But once you’re thoroughly soaked, it feels so refreshing, particularly on a warm day. No need to worry about overheating; you’ve got nature’s free misting tent all around you. Given the choice between a hot, sunny day, and a warm, rainy one, I’ll take the rainy one every time.
Yes, your sneakers will get wet, and I agree that’s not the greatest thing. I do try to avoid large puddles, and sometimes take the insoles out of the shoes when I get home to help them dry more quickly. But I’ve also put wet shoes on many times, and it’s not so bad.
So here’s my suggestion: if you’ve been missing the opportunity to run in the rain, give it a shot. You might find that you love it too.