What to wear when it's raining: I went out... - Couch to 5K

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What to wear when it's raining


I went out looking for a waterproof running jacket at the weekend only to be told by the sales person that such a thing does not exist. His explanation: anything that keeps the water out will also keep it in and before you know it you'll be swimming in your own sweat.

So what does everyone on here wear? His suggestion was to invest in a windproof jacket which is apparently much more important, but I can't face the idea of getting soaked to the bone while out on a run. The idea has put me off to the point where I will only venture out when I'm sure it won't rain (and with winter coming, dry days will be few and far between).

Also, for those who love to run in the rain, do you run in all types of rain or just drizzle? I'm finding it hard to imagine myself running when it's pelting down and coming at me horizontally. I don't mind being a bit damp, but don't fancy the thought of being able to ring out my pants when I get home.

All thoughts on rainy running welcome!

27 Replies

He speaks the truth, I have a really lightweight jacket I used to wear, still came back drenched. Now I run in my t-shirt in all conditions, rain storms and all.

Be11adonnaGraduate in reply to crox

Have you ever got sick crox? I am weary of getting drenched due to the 2 headcolds I've had since I started running. The salesman told me a shower within 15 min of my run would prevent that from happening again.

croxGraduate in reply to Be11adonna

From memory I've had 2 stints when I couldn't run, 1 due to a bug last Xmas. 1 with injury.


Yes, although they claim to give 'protection from wind and rain' they aren't waterproof. Having said that they do keep out the wind which, if you're wet, is an advantage. I run by the sea and find that I am grateful for the protection it offers when it's cold, wet and very windy. But it certainly doesn't keep you dry...

croxGraduate in reply to Landesman

Trouble is you sweat and they don't wick enough water away :-(

LandesmanGraduate in reply to crox

Yes, but it creates the wetsuit effect - you're warm and wet rather than cold and wet....

croxGraduate in reply to Landesman



I'm glad i saw this post i went out looking for a waterproof light weight running jacket too and couldn't find anything suitable, and this must of course be the reason. I will stop looking now lol.


But you can buy waterproof breathable cycling jackets so what's with that?

swanscotGraduate in reply to GoogleMe

But they are only breathable to a point. I have a 'waterproof breathable cycling jacket' and unless it's really cold and I'm not sweating much, or I'm cycling slowly so as to not break into a sweat, I get wet inside from sweat.


I wore my hubbys goretex cycling jacket in the rain...got home and ranted at him that it wasn't waterproof...only for him to point out that it was wet from my sweat!!!!! I don't bother now, just feel that lovely rain on your skin...


I am just digging out my cycling gear today. I like the curve of tops down the derriere - and I used the waterproof one quite successfully last year - not sure it kept me dry but i was warm. The other thing I like is all the handy pockets which sit in the curve of your back - great for the small drinks bottles i have and what not. The thing I find really helps is a baseball cap - can't bear rain dripping of my nose and this just seems to be a psychological thing that helps.

You have to find what works for you :-)


I only run in the rain if I get caught in it BUT I do always get good times as I run faster to get home he he !

Love the psychology of this!!:-)


I love running in the rain and generally I don't bother with a jacket, I just wear a long sleeve shirt tucked into my trackies or shorts (temp dependant) and then a short sleeves top over that.

If the rain is horizontal then I may wait until it isn't so hard, but if I'm already running then I just enjoy feeling like a big kid


Once you are out there it is never as bad as you think it's going to be.

My experience is what's important is to keep warm and dry before you start and ocne you finish. Usually this is not a problem if you are running from home but if it's an event like a Parkrun where you hang around at the start it's worth having some sort of jacket. Once you start running you don't notice the rain and it can be quite refreshing. However I'd really advise not getting chilled once you finish - extra layers, waterproof if necessary if you are still outside, then a hot shower or bath as soon as possible thereafter.

If you feel you need some sort of protection when running how about a gilet in high viz colours?

I did the Tough Guy a few years ago which is a run/obstacle course that takes place on the last Sunday in January in the Midlands and involves running down a stream and total submersion in places. It is a very cold event! In trained all winter in a tee shirt and shorts and whenever I came across a pond or a ditch full of water, I jumped in. I can't say it was all fun, but I didn't get as much as a cough all winter. I have never been healthier. I still run in a tee shirt and shorts in the rain. Just make sure your shower is hot for your return!


I don't mind running in the rain either, I just think of the lovely hot shower I'll have when I get in!!the only thing that gets me is when the rain is in my face and I can't keep my eyes open to see where I'm going. Does anyone wear a hat to run?

Harri81 in reply to Oryxx

I bought a visor thing from tescos a year ago, it's like a baseball cap without the top of the head bit! It keeps the rain (or sun!) out of my eyes but stops my head getting too hot!


Running in the rain, even (especially!) heavy rain, is just SO much fun. I love it. You're gonna get wet anyway so you may as well enjoy it.


I wear glasses so wear a baseball cap when it's raining to keep the rain off my glasses and face. Can't say I ENJOY running in the rain but once you're out there it's OK. If it's raining very hard when I open the door, I have been known to go back to bed :o)


OMG, I am the only person not to run in the rain. I have even bought a lightweight 'windproof' top so I could risk it. Sounds like I should 'man up' and get out there.


I've been out a couple times in rain since I started 2 weeks ago. The first time was a light misty drizzle which i really enjoyed. The park was less busy and it was almost refreshing!

The next time started that way but decended into complete downpour! I was so wet it looked like I jumped in a pool fully clothed! I couldn't help but laugh.

Approaching winter i am more worried about staying warm than dry (although they are linked) - i have a lightweight jacket that has zippered holes under the armpits to improve ventilation but haven't tried that...


I have always hated being out in the rain, so wasn't looking forward to running in it, but I wasn't about to let rain stop me from running, so I bit the bullet and just went out in it. I thought I'd be miserable, but it was actually fine! The fresh rain smell was lovely and I actually ran really well. I knew that as soon as I got home I could have a shower, so I didn't mind. It was the first time in my life that I didn't mind being out in the rain!

Once it starts to get colder, I'm going to wear a long sleeve top and gloves - I figure that as long as my hands are warm I'll be fine. I'm an ear muff girl, but I'm not sure that these will be comfortable with ear phones in, so I'll probably invest in a hat because I hate cold ears!

swanscotGraduate in reply to Maria211081

You may find a hat too warm; I do. I wear a Buff ( buffwear.co.uk/ ) and I fold this to give about 3 layers of the thin material over my ears and only one layer on the rest of my head.

Maria211081Graduate in reply to swanscot

Oo, thanks! That's a great tip!


I nearly took my rain jacket back because I got so wet the first time I wore it. The second time, I wore it because it looked like rain & I got just as wet even though the rain didn't actually come. I was so glad I didn't make a wally of myself by taking it back to the shop after the first time.

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