There are times I do things I probably shouldn’t do. Today was one of those days.
It had been dreary all day, including some mist but no true rain. The weather forecast wasn’t calling for rain for a few hours, but there was light stuff in the area near the end of my workday. I wanted to run, and I thought I could risk it.
Right as I was getting ready, the mist had picked up and was getting pretty close to be true rain. And I ran anyway.
I left my phone behind but left my Fitbit on, and headed out the door. The misty rain never really let up. It just continued to fall as I trudged on a shortened version of my route.
And I’m glad I did.
I needed that run. I hadn’t run in a week, and because of a shoulder injury, I haven’t been able to lift or do yoga for the past two weeks. I really needed that run.
And honestly, the rain helped. Unplugging was nice. No music, no zombie alerts. Just me, my thoughts, and the sound of my feet hitting the pavement.
I’ve only run in the rain a couple of times in my adult life. As a teenager, there were football and track practices that occasionally came with a side of rain, but those weren’t really optional. And growing up in one of the dry parts of Texas, there just wasn’t much rain in general.
As an adult, precipitation has only been in my run twice before. Once, I set out thinking it wasn’t going to rain only to get caught in an awful downpour. The next time was a few months ago when the weather was pure mist. It couldn’t be accurately described as falling; it just sort of hung in the air while I rain through it.
Today was a heavier mist. It actually came down but never heavily. It was just a constant fall. And it was great.
When I was walking earlier in the day, I realized I thought of the weather as football weather. I had to think about that for a second. Dreary was not a typical weather description. Where this thought came from, though, was when games and practices would start to get washed out by the rain. Not heavy enough to cause things to stop but enough that it altered how the game was played. And those were my favorite. Throwing a wet football doesn’t work out well, so the game becomes rushing based and much more physical. It’s a tougher game on a lot of levels, and I always liked the violence of the game.
And so I trudged around for a bit more than two miles on my run. I like to imagine that I looked like a badass making my way through the wet weather as the people I passed were burrowed under rain jackets and umbrellas. It’s more likely I just looked like an idiot. A glorious idiot.
But I’ll take it.
Something I’m realizing is that I seem to relish running when the conditions are less than ideal. In fact, I daresay I enjoy it.
I might hate running, but I take pride in running at a time other people would stay inside. I like running in the rain. I like that two of my 5Ks have been in freezing temperatures. I like running in obnoxious heat and humidity that could accurately be described as a public health hazard.
It’s easy to run when the sky is clear and the temperature is in the 60s or low 70s. Running becomes a lot more unpleasant when there’s a heat advisory or a freeze warning, and that’s when I like it even when I’m complaining about it. This is when running matters. This is when you take that hard step that other people aren’t willing to take.
I’ll let you in on a little secret: The runners I hate are the ones who show up only in the spring and the fall. I’m glad you’re running, but when you’re lightweight butt can’t take the heat or the cold and you seek shelter on a treadmill in a climate-controlled gym, I’ll still be outside dodging cars and putting feet to the pavement. You can run farther than me all you want, but I’ll always know I’m made of tougher stuff.
#ihaterunning but I like it when it’s unpleasant