How many times have we put off, shortened or cancelled our daily runs due to poor weather? I know I have waited and waited for the weather to improve only to give up on Mother Nature and head out the door. I have spent many pre-runs worrying about being wet and cold.
I guess it is human nature to want to be as comfortable as possible while still wanting to be active and fit. Sometimes you just can’t have both and there are days when running is simply pretty miserable. I know for me it takes some extra focus and willpower to get out the door and get it done on days when the weather is awful. Usually once I’m out on the trail it is not as bad as I had originally feared.
I’ve run in all sorts of miserable and epic weather over the years. It still amazes me to this day how I can sit and worry about going out for a run in poor weather. I’m guessing the transition from comfort to misery in a matter of seconds is what creates that anxiety. Sometimes this feeling is maximized by knowing I have the wrong clothes or shoes to wear. I can’t remember how many times I have used an extra pair of socks for the gloves that I left at home. One really cold day I actually considered wearing my underwear on my head because I forgot my hat. I eventually came to my senses and just let my ears go numb.
Like I said, once I’m out the door I usually realize that my fears were ill-founded and I actually enjoy the run. Now there are times when all the positive thinking in the world won’t change the outcome but I try to look at the long term picture. I think to myself, is my competition out on a day like today? They probably are but I choose to think that it is just me and the elements. If you can get out there on the really bad days it can also make you mentally stronger. It is rewarding and valuable for me to get the crappy weather running days in the bank, so that on race day I won’t have to learn to cope if the weather is far from perfect.
So when it is 40 degrees and pouring rain, try to look ahead to that post-run euphoria knowing that you braved the elements. Chances are your competition chose not to get ‘r done.