I knew it was inevitable. I live in the Pacific Northwest. I decided to start training for a marathon. I knew that this would mean running in the rain.
I don’t know when I became such a wuss about rain. I grew up in Minnesota, where we are tough and can handle all types of weather. I used to LOVE running in the rain because it was like having a natural cooling system while running. I actually used to see rain and think, “Yay! It’s raining! I’m going to go for a run!” (Weird, right?)
Then something happened…I moved to Southern California. Where it sort-of-almost doesn’t rain. This is when my aversion to any weather other than blue skies and 70-85 degrees began. I got used to the comfortable weather, and though I have not lived in Los Angeles for 1.5 years, I still haven’t learned to accept weather conditions outside of those listed above. Ah, I love blue skies and 80 degree days, with 0 humidity! Perfect for running!
So…after living in LA, I went from loving running in the rain to avoiding the rain like the plague. And now here I am, in the Pacific Northwest. Where it rains everyday. Well, it feels like it rains everyday. This is partly why I’ve gotten so out of shape and why training for this marathon is such a huge challenge for me…until this week, I wouldn’t run if it was raining out.
But I’m facing my fears. Because if Hal Higdon says I’m supposed to run, then I have to run, even if it’s raining out. Two of my 5 runs in the last week were in the rain. The first one was an easy 3-miler. It wasn’t raining when I left, but started raining after about a mile. I think that worked out well, because I didn’t have the chance to decide not to run. I started running and was sort of tricked into doing it in the rain. I ended up being surprised, because it really wasn’t so bad after all! The only bad part was the reprimand I got from my husband upon my return home for not putting a raincoat on the dog. (Yes, we’re crazy, our dog has a raincoat. You know what’s even crazier? I sewed that raincoat myself).
My second rain-run wasn’t so nice and easy as the first. It was 7 miles. I don’t have a nice running watch, so I’ve been tracking my runs on my phone. I didn’t want to get my phone wet, so I put it in a plastic sandwich baggie. Yep, there I was, running around town looking like I didn’t know the difference between a phone and a sandwich.
Anyway, as I’m reflecting on it now, the 7-mile rain-run wasn’t so bad in and of itself. There was one point when I was trying to cut into the park, and because of road construction they had blocked of the entrance. In order to get around it, I had to jump a little barrier straight into a 6-inch muddle (muddy puddle). Other than that, it really was kind of fun…
…Until I got back from the run. My running clothes were soaked, and I was suddenly freezing. I shivered and shivered and couldn’t get warm. I took a hot shower and couldn’t get warm. I put my snowboarding jacket on over another jacket and went to Target. The checkout girl asked me if it was really that cold out that I needed two jackets. That’s when I realized…no, it wasn’t that cold out! My rain-run had cursed me, and I couldn’t warm up! Grr, rain, I hate you!
Okay, so if I’m going to keep up with my training, I’ve got to focus on the positive. I will run in the rain. I can do it. I’m tough.
Also, have you ever noticed that colors seem brighter in the rain? Amazing!