Running Into the Fall

Do you have a favorite time of the year to run?

If you know me, then you have probably heard me complain a few times over the last few months about running in the heat and the humidity.

If you haven’t heard me complain about it, then just take my word for it – I don’t like it.

Without a doubt, summer running is my least favorite. I still like running in the summer no matter if it is uncomfortable, but just not as much as other times of year.

Once we begin getting close to the end of August, I start to really look forward to running in the cooler temperatures.

No, actually, it’s much earlier than this – around late June – that I begin wanting the heat and humidity to stop.

Often during the first couple of weeks of September, we get a taste of cooler temperatures where I live, especially in the mornings. But most years, there is a period in mid-to-late September that the heat comes back for a few days or a week. Actually, as I am writing this, we have had the hot weather return for a couple of days.

With the heat and humidity beginning to go away and the cooler temperatures just around the corner, now would be as good a time as any to explain why the fall is definitely my favorite time of year to run.

I’m sure I am not alone in saying that the fall is my favorite time of year to be running. A big part of it might also be that we have just come through the summer months, so the weather in the fall feels even more enjoyable in contrast.

Here are some reasons why fall is my favorite time of year for running:

Cooler Temperatures and No/Lower Humidity

This one is kind of obvious, but this just makes everything more comfortable. While I don’t mind working up a good sweat, it is nice not to be dripping sweat and come back from a run looking like I ran through a rain storm. It’s also nice not to have to constantly be wiping sweat out of my eyes. Also, less chafing, which I shouldn’t really have to explain.

Looking Forward to Races

Fall brings with it a lot of races on the calendar. Especially this year when a lot of races are happening for the first time in over a year and a half. Fall races give a great opportunity to see how much your summer training will pay off. And if I haven’t mentioned it yet, the cooler temperatures could give you a better chance at running faster and maybe getting a personal best time!

More Flexibility

Even though there might be less daylight, the more comfortable running conditions allow me to get my run in at any time of the day. I still much prefer to get my running done in the morning, but if my work schedule or something else keeps that from happening then it’s just as easy to go at other times throughout the day without having to worry about how hot it might be later in the day.

More Predictability

With your routine becoming more normal again – less vacations, schools back in for your kids or, for me, work getting busier after the summer – it makes it easier to develop a routine and schedule a regular time for your runs. And as we all know, making running or anything part of your routine can help your training by keeping you consistent.

Depending on where you live, the summer and winter could bring extreme temperatures that can sometimes make running conditions difficult. So the times in between summer and winter (and winter and summer) can be really great times to run.

As with a lot of things, this could also just come down to personal preference. Maybe you don’t mind running in heat and humidity or maybe the fall brings more rain than you like to run in. Or maybe the warmer temperatures stick around further into the fall.

Whatever the weather might be like, the best thing to do is adapt to it and keep running!

So, what’s your favorite time of year to run?

More From RunPatRun:

  • If you are looking for a movie or documentary to inspire your running, check out my two posts – Running Documentaries to Watch and Movies and Books That Inspire! I’ll keep my eyes open for some other ones to let everyone know about.
  • What characteristics do you lean on to get you through difficult periods in your running? Take a look at my Pillars of Running Success that have helped me the last few years.
  • Coming up next week: This past weekend I was in Pennsylvania running in the Bird-in-Hand 5k and Half Marathon on Friday evening and Saturday morning, respectively. Part 2 of RunPatRun Race Series will be about my experiences in these races. If you want a sneak peek, take a look at my Instagram posts, but next week I’ll provide more of the details.

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