There are days when the thought of running in the rain makes me jump right back into bed or find the nearest treadmill. For some reason, though, this morning was a delightful exception. Maybe because I have been stalking weather.com all week, willing the raincloud in the forecast to magically turn into a sun, and so the rainy mess I woke up to this morning wasn’t a surprise. That, and I think the simple fact that it is spring makes running in the rain seem more romantic somehow.
First of all, this is day 1 of 1 of meeting my out the door in 30 minutes rule. I was out the door at 7am, rain jacket firmly in place. Temperature-wise I couldn’t have asked for better: low 40s making my one “real” rain jacket the perfect weight over a t-shirt and a pair of capri length tights. Of course the first few minutes were the toughest because I hadn’t reached that critical juncture at which I am mostly wet instead of mostly dry. That line where it’s OK to start jumping in the puddles instead of avoiding them because hell, you’re wet already, what’s a little more water?
Another thing that got me out the door was the prospect of doing my favorite route for the first time in a while. Lately my runs, unless long or on a treadmill, have all been on the same 6.3 mile loop, and I was glad to change things up. This route takes me around the Jackie O Reservoir, meaning I have to be very careful scheduling when I do this loop to avoid the tourists who insist upon walking 5 abreast the wrong direction or the people who ignore the clearly posted “no dogs no strollers no bike” rule. Today was perfect: just me, the sleeping ducks, and the puddles. The drainage system on this cinder path leaves a bit to be desired, and since it had been raining since last night, 75% of the path was covered in an inch of water. There is something viscerally satisfying about each solid splash when my foot lands. Is it a feeling of childhood? Of rebellion? Of connecting with nature?
The one bad thing about having a great rainy day run is that I realize I need to stop being a wimp and do them more often. I would never have the same feeling on a treadmill about a run. I’d feel accomplished, sure, but wouldn’t have that feeling that I’ve conquered something great. Great running stories never happen on treadmills, do they?
5.5 miles in 49:21 (8:56 min/mile)