[Be sure to sing the title of this post to the tune of Singing in the Rain....]
Yes, where I am, we are expecting to get the first rain of the "winter" either today, tomorrow, or the next day. Many of you may not have run when it's raining before.
You are in for a treat!
Your initial reaction will be, "But won't I get wet?"
Um, yes, probably due to that watery stuff coming down out of the sky.
Running in the rain is one of those wacky traditions of cross-country, like hay bales on the course. It's actually pretty fun because you don't have Mom yelling at you "GET INSIDE OUT OF THE RAIN SO YOU DON'T GET WET!" You can actually step in puddles and splash water all over. On purpose!
Seriously, just like other weather conditions, you have to be prepared. You can't NOT hydrate, just because it's going to rain. Your body still needs fluids. Probably less than on a hot day, but about the same as on a regular day.
If it's colder than on a dry day, you might want to wear a long-sleeved shirt and maybe even running tights.
In general, whatever clothing you wear should be made of some kind of man-made fabric (a "wicking" fabric) because cotton will just absorb the water and make you cold. The other kinds won't hold onto the water, so it will be more comfortable. You probably don't have to worry too much about wearing "warm" clothes because running will keep you warm enough in most cases (remember that when it's dry, your body gets so warm that it sweats - you might sweat less when it's raining, but you probably won't get cold). Some people like wearing gloves because your hands can get cold when they get wet.
As in sunny weather, I like wearing a hat, but in rainy weather it's to keep the rain out of my eyes.
Most importantly, you need to have something dry to put on when you finish. You still have to stretch, etc., and you'll freeze if you don't get out of your wet clothes. That means you have to plan ahead. You have to bring a spare t-shirt (long sleeved, if possible) and some sweatpants with you to school.
If it might rain several days in a row, you should have at least two sets of "rain clothes." The wicking fabric will generally dry fairly quickly, so, even if you can't wash and dry your wet shirt, you can at least rinse it out and hang it up - it will be dry within a day and a half or so.
What about those sopping wet shoes? You need to dry them out because you don't want to be putting wet shoes on tomorrow, so here's what you do (even if you already have two pairs that you are rotating): Take out the insoles, set them up on their edges somewhere so they can dry, then stuff the shoes with newspaper. The newspaper will slowly absorb the water from the shoes. Leave them alone for a while, like a couple of hours. Before you go to bed, take the newspaper out and check to see how wet they are. If they're only a little wet, just leave them alone overnight - they should be dry by morning. If they're still pretty wet, stuff them with (dry) newspaper again and leave them overnight. When you get up the next morning, check them again and do the same thing. Don't put the insoles back in until right before you're about to put them on to run again.
Presto! Now you're ready to run in the rain. It's actually a useful thing to do in training because, guess what? They don't cancel cross-country races because of rain - you may as well get used to it. Heck, it's fun!!