Top reasons why you want to be trail running in the rain ... seriously

I know it's tough to embrace the rainy days after 3 gorgeous month of almost nothing but sunshine. For all I know we had the driest August and Semptember on record.

So here are a few thoughts that hopefully will help you drag your tired self out of bed and head out when you can hear the pitter patter of raindrops outside the house.

The rainforest in the fall offers new delights. On my two hour outing today I ran in streams that would have made most creeks blush even two weeks ago. There are waterfalls in plenty of places and you rediscover the purpose of many bridges and boardwalks that seemed so pointless throughout the summer. You will discover the charm of the rainforest in the rain. That's its natural state. In the summer it's like a trail runner on the road or a fish out of water ... you know what I mean. The mist, the fog, the drops, the sound of the creeks. You also get a good agility workout while rock and stream hopping (up until your shoes and socks are soaked through anyway and you plough staight through the water).

Being in the forest takes the edge of. That applies to the rain, the wind and your worldly worries and problems.

You get to test your gear. Is that soft shell really rainproof? Do your fancy new shoes drain well, or do those top of the line Gore-Tex sneakers do an equally good job keeping the water in as they do keeping it out in a light drizzle. In my case I discovered today that washing my clothes in the machine and sending them for a second rinse cycle without detergent after is not enough to prevent my legs from getting all foamy and sudsy after prolonged rain exposure.

A hot shower, dry clothes or your favourite post workout treat hardly ever feel as good as they do after getting thoroughly soaked.

Come spring you'll appreciate you kept up some baseline activity throughout the rainy season.

You'll be glad you ran even though you might not feel like it from the start.

And last but not least Seymour Sundays will be back on the schedule soon to keep you committed throughout the darker months. And even though I can't promise you rain every week there is sure to be some. So after all these reasons don't you dare make me wait for you while you are staying in bed.

WHAT ARE YOUR REASONS to run in the rain? Please comment.

See you out there.



Ean Jackson's picture

I am feeling bullied...

Some thoughts on why NO run in the rain... devil

- Few things beat sleeping in on the weekend while it rains cats and dogs outside
- Swolen streams mean water gets in the top of Goretex shoes, making them gushy for hours
- I thought it was an old wives tale, but apparently, what my Granny told me about getting a cold from being in the cold and wet is being proven by modern science
- Agreed, it's not that bad when you're out in it and comitted, but it is so hard to get motivated to leave the comfort of a warm, dry place and warm, dry clothes to go out into the rain

"Rain, No Train" Jackson
(who started writing Christmas cards this weekend and only left the house to look at the torrent of water that was the friendly, little Mosquito Creek 2 short days ago!)

Marc's picture

Mystery falls

I went by Mystery falls today. The nice place that was bone dry a week ago was raging to a point were I didn't dare cross it.

That's why I am saying everything will be altered and look way diiferent in a downpour than it does in the sunshine. Variety. The zest of life.

By the way the "catching a cold" debate is an ongoing topic here at our house. So don't forward your scientific data to my wife or I'd be all out of arguments.

Killaine's picture

Equal opportunity awesomeness

I'm an equal opportunity runner so yesterday I ran trails and today it was 2hrs on the seawall. in both cases, I couldn't believe the number of runners. The seawall is awesome in the early morning rain. Although there are lots of runners, there isn't the usual chaos of everyone else. It was peaceful and calm. Add the fog and the sounds of the gulls and it was pretty awesome. 

Marc's picture

There is life out there

I bike home on the seawall sometimes. And the tourists and strollers sure stay home once the rain starts falling. Wait until January when all the Sun Run clinics start. I find you can always see a difference with the number of runners on the seawall once they are "in training".

Marc's picture

Seawall is always a fun place for different reasons

Gotta love it there on a sunny day when all the visitors to the city rent bikes and make the bike path experience a bit more challenging ... but that's a whole new blog post.

teagirl's picture


We had a great run in the rain thismorning!

Crazy thing: yesterday was my daughter's first experience of rain in her entire life, and she's nearly 2 months old! Yikes. She was totally enthralled... (good thing, 'cause there's more where that came from!)

I figure once you get started, rain doesn't really make much difference - I sort of prefer it 'cause it keeps you cool! As long as you have a way to get warm & dry when you're done, it's all good. And certainly, it makes everything afterwards that much more lovely.

Thanks for celebrating rain :)

Marc's picture

It does look like you were embracing the rain

Way to go.

Hope I  can make it out for the run the next time around.

The start time was a tad too late for me today.

teagirl's picture


i know!! i get up plenty early, with the little one, but getting her & my husband ready & out the door for an outing (especially a super-rainy outing!) sure takes a long time. Presumably we'll get better at it... I think I'll put together a "rainy day outing supplies" bag & keep it armed & dangerous :)

[also, one of our participants today had roller derby practice last night 'til midnight, good grief...]

jweresch's picture

Great Read!

Very well written.  Thank you for that.  I spent 1 1/2 hours today in the rain and every runner I encountered smiled at me as if we belonged to the same group with the same understanding, very different from the sunny dry days where the trails/roads are much less of a community.

Marc's picture

the cult of the rain runners

I saw a bunch of people out for a trailwork party. Now that's committment.

Sibylle's picture

Nice Marc,  Get us motivated.

Nice Marc,  Get us motivated.  I had a similar post 7 (yikes) years ago here.

Marc's picture

Nice post

Funny that Ean would be so so sensitive to the elements. You'd think you don't get his running resume without embracing a bit of discomfort every now and so often.

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