Don’t be afraid of the rain!

Posted on December 8, 2012


a less rainy trail

a less rainy trail

Today I completed a serious ten, which felt great for the first eight miles, but boy I felt those last two!  I am very happy I kept my pace, as recommended by my training program.  I am training for my first full marathon, and I chose a program for a “sub 4 marathon.” It was either that or a beginner program, (or a faster one!)  I don’t know that I can pull off a 4hr marathon (probably not!), my best 1/2 marathon time is 1:59:40. Made it twenty seconds under the wire, and for those doing math, doubling your half marathon time is not exactly how it goes!  Hey, but we’ll see!  I’ll be happy with 4:30:00, but let’s see how we do in March.

Today’s Run on Runkeeper

What I really want to talk about today though, is yesterday’s run.

My training program was nice enough to have a slow four miles planned for the day before my distance run.  Nice easy jog to the pond, around twice, and back.  I looked at the crazy sky, and asked my Dearest Jim (the household weatherman) what the chances of rain were supposed to be.  I was told “the forecast said 30%,” but that didn’t match the skyline.  Well, no time like the present, I had wasted too much morning procrastinating already, and I had a study date to get to for a chemistry final.  I headed out, and as soon as my feet left neighborhood and hit trail, the sky opened up. and fell all over me.  It was cold, but by the time the rain really started going, I was already at mile one, so I was warmed up.

I heard the “Rocky’ theme in the background of my mind and jogged giddily along as I felt my face being pelted by cold hard rain.  It was amazing!  I felt like I was at an adventurer’s idea of a day at the spa.  I passed some large blue herons standing tall on one leg in the middle of water, huddling their head down for cover under a wing.  I saw a log loaded with sitting ducks, which I found hysterical, and laughed out loud.  I ignored a text from my husband asking if I needed him and the kids to come and get me.  (Are you kidding? No way Jose!)  I would normally have been consumed with worry and disappointment that my brand new shoes were getting soaked, but luckily (haha) on the previous run I had encountered a nasty giant water puddle which I tried (unsuccessfully) to skirt, (successfully) sinking full-shoe deep into stinky pluff mud.  So I got to be happy about this run’s rain on my new shoes.

I pile on moisturizer before a run, and once I felt the last slippery traces being washed away, my face felt really clean.  I pointed it toward the onslaught and ran with my eyes closed and mouth open, occasionally peeking up at the tops of very tall trees.  I’ve said before, and I am sure many of you have felt it, running is a deeply spiritual activity. It’s like a meditation, a prayer, personal time with you and your mind and your maker and nature.  I felt so pure, as if the rain was a Runner’s Baptism, cleansing my soul of the past sins of sloth and gluttony.  I was bittersweet to reach the end of my run, but grateful for the exhilarating communion with Mother Earth and Mister Weather. After a five second shower and a top bun and headband, I pulled on jeans and my giant cozy beatle’s hoodie and headed out to make chemistry exam history. But that run lingered with me like a long lost lover, I have a feeling I’ll remember it for years to come.