Rain Running Safety
After a long and dreary winter, you are probably ready for spring. We're here to tell you that a little bit of rain shouldn't rain on your running parade. Studies have shown that running in adverse weather conditions helps you become a more resilient runner. It has also proven to be incredibly therapeutic, as the sound of rain sends signals to your brain to produce Alpha waves, the same waves released while you are sleeping. Running in the rain does have its benefits, but as with anything, it poses certain risks as well. Here's a few tips to stay safe out there if you plan to go for a jog on a rainy day.
Rain and Temperature
If it is a torrential rainfall, it’s best to stay inside. The same can be said of a thunderstorm. It is a considerable safety risk to be outside if there is lightning. This may sound obvious, but don’t run in freezing rain. The combination of wet and cold puts you at a higher risk for hypothermia, which can be deadly. Even in a spring shower, where the rain feels warmer, you will want to remove any damp articles of clothing as soon as you get home. Take a warm shower, sip on some tea or soup, and allow your body to recover from the run.
Focus on Finishing
If you want to do a speed run, then stay inside and use a treadmill. Speed training in the rain is a recipe for disaster. The roads are slicker and carry a huge risk of a wipe-out. You typically burn less calories in the rain because you run slower. However, it has incredible mental benefits, and as we all know, running is 90% mental. Rain will make you a more resilient runner. The adverse weather might have a short-term effect on your performance, but you will see that your time has improved once you run in ideal conditions.
Dress the Part
You will need good traction on your shoes. As runners, shoe safety should always be evaluated, and becomes essential if you are training in the rain. Good traction can help you avoid falls and prevent injuries. Much like your shoe choices, you want to make sure the rest of your outfit is up to par for running in the rain. Wear compression shorts and socks to help prevent chafing. If you have a rain jacket, now is the time to wear it! For your base layer, wearing something light-weight would be good. Your temperature will rise while you are running, and you don’t want to overheat.
Know Where to Run
Make sure you avoid areas that are prone to flooding. You don’t want to be caught in a flash flood or have floodwaters cut off your route home. You need to consider how busy the road can get and ensure that you wear visible clothing for street running. Trail running carries some unique risks. The ground will be muddier and tree branches can fall, blocking your path or hitting you, and your chances of slipping are higher. To help avoid some of these things, you will want to: 1. Run with a buddy. If either of you gets hurt, the other can get help. 2. Be aware. No headphones allowed; you need to be completely aware of your surroundings and act accordingly.