It’s hard for me to define “perfect” race weather. There are a lot of things that go into me deciding what’s good weather and what’s not. I’ve run a lot of races, but depending on where the race is located and what type of race I’m doing determines what I prescribe to be great race weather.
My least favorite race weather is definitely rain. I’ve been in two events (thank goodness it’s only been two! Knock on wood) where it has been raining and both times I was miserably cold. I couldn’t warm up because I was staying wet and unable to generate enough body heat to warm myself up. The first time this happened was at Tough Mudder Central Florida 2014 and the second was at Spartan Race Miami 2015. At Tough Mudder, it was cold as well as rainy so it was doubly challenging. Not to mention the numerous water obstacles on course and the 1/4 mile water crossing we had to do. And if you’ve ever jumped into an ice bath…you don’t want to do that in cold, wet weather.
Cold temps don’t bother me as long as it’s not an obstacle race. For regular races, my ideal temperature is in the 50s. Every time I’ve run a race where the temp was in the 50s I’ve gotten a PR.
At Best Damn Race 5k (March 2014)
St. Pete Beach Classic 10k (January 2015)
Princess Half Marathon (February 2016)
Best Damn Race 10k (March 2016)
For road races, my ability to run faster drops when the temps climb over 75, especially with longer distances. I can’t stand running in the heat, which makes living in Florida pretty challenging. Luckily I’ve downloaded several apps that tell me when the best time to run is- two being the Outsider app from the Weather Channel and MinuteCast by Accuweather on my new Garmin Forerunner 230.
I can handle slightly higher temps at OCR races, as the heat is less intense when you’re in and out of water obstacles. Still, for those I’d prefer the temps to be in the low 70s. All this talk about perfect racing weather is actually making me a bit sad since it’s getting to be summer in Florida…and we all know what that means!