Adventure Racing

How to Run in the Rain

Raindrops

Okay, I’m having trouble. Although I’ve lived in Vancouver for over a decade and I’m used to the rain, I’m a new runner and a fair weather one at that. So what do I do when fall is fully here and winter is just around the corner? So what is one to do?

Step 1 – Avoid the Rain

Although there are quite a few nice fall days, and the occasional sun drenched winter day, with 1117.2 mm of rain annually, avoiding running in the rain means running regularly is only a summer plan.

Okay…restart…

Step 1 – figure out what you’re going to wear
This is something easier said than done. I went to several stores and everyone had an opinion. I looked around and was faced with a plethora of options. I was confused.

Okay… Restart once again…

Step 1 – Determine your running temperature
In each store I visited to ask opinions on clothing I was asked this question: “Do you run hot or cold?” My first thought was that that was a ridiculous question. It’s running. Isn’t everyone hot?? What I discovered after asking more questions, and after meeting one woman who runs on cool spring days in THREE layers, was that some people do indeed run cold. I, most certainly, run hot.

Step 2 – Shortlist the options
As I determined I was a “Hot” runner, my layering options were few. If I have too many things on I will certainly be stripping them off as I go along. So I had two options – Long sleeve top, or t-shirt with a rain jacket.

Longsleeve technical top

From all the stores, the biggest difference and the thing to consider most was the thickness of the fabric. Lululemon had a nice thin shirt, and Northface had both a medium and thicker weight fabric. Of course if you want to be guaranteed thumbholes, then Lulu is the way to go.

Running jacket

There really are far too many options here. There Is waterproof and water resistant. There’s spring and there’s fall/winter. There’s long and there’s short. There is hooded and not hooded. There’s even a vest. What to choose?

Step 3 – Make a decision

As I had a race to run in a couple of days and the weather report stated rain, I needed to make a choice. So I went with the option that would allow me to cool down as much as possible if necessary and bought a running jacket. I chose a fall weighted material (for obvious reasons) that was water resistant in order to ensure some level of breathability, and no hood. My logic was that it would keep the rain out for at least a little while, and if I got hot I could take it off and wrap it around my waist. The waist wrapping solution is not optimal, but at least it gives me options. The hood? I stopped wearing a running hat a long time ago due to the heat, so I figured I probably didn’t need a hood.

Step 4 – Get running in the rain!

While BC does have many drops of rain in a year, its turns out my worrying for the race was for naught. It turned out to be a chilly, but completely dry morning. That being said, I was grateful to have my arms covered in the brisk morning air, and I was (as planned) able to take it off about half way through the race.

I find myself looking forward to the next wet day I can run in so I can fully test the jacket.
But I assure you…I can wait :-)

About the author

Ginger Nasser

Ginger Nasser

Wife and mother of two, she has found a new passion for physical activity! As a young girl, she wasn't attracted to athletics. When she got older she realized it wasn't the athletic part of the activities she didn't like, it was the activities themselves! She needed a bit of adrenaline to keep her interest.
5 years ago she discovered mountain biking, followed quickly by adventure running and CrossFit. And she hasn't looked back! She hopes you will join her on a journey to help more women find it in themselves to try these things too!

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