Hello divas! I hope that your week has gotten off to a great start so far. It hasn’t been too bad here except for the fact that it still feels like summer when it should be cooling off. I for one can’t wait for fall – even though I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with it. I mean I LOVE the weather, the foods, the holidays and the cute fall and winter clothing. But one thing I hate about the season is when the time changes and all of a sudden there is not enough daylight in a day. Which, as you can imagine, makes running outside interesting. No matter what time of day I decide to go for a run – whether 5:30am or 5:30pm – I am running in limited to no light. So today I am sharing my 5 Tips to Safely Run in the Dark.
I like to sleep. For anyone who knows me, this is no surprise. Because I love staying in bed as long as possible in the mornings, I have a hard time getting up early to go for run. This means that I typically do my runs in the evening after work. This works out really well in the summer months when the sun does not set until nearly 9pm. However, as fall and winter approach, I am finding that I am now running in darkness and having to focus on safety on the road more than I have had to do over the summer. So if you are like me and plan to run outside when the sun sets at 5:30pm (or before the sun rises for that matter), here are some tips for staying safe.
Tell someone. You will want to make sure that someone (neighbor, significant other, family member) knows that you will be outside running and about how far/how long you will be doing so. If anything happens while you are out, this person will know where and when to look if you need help.
Take your phone. Related to number 1 is making sure that you have your cell phone with you (with a charged battery). This will allow you to call for help if there is an emergency of some sort while you are out.
Be Seen. You will want to make sure you can be easily seen by passing vehicles. You want to wear reflective clothing, lights and run against traffic to accomplish this. Most running shoes and running clothing that you will buy have some sort of reflective material somewhere on them. There are also reflective armbands, headlamps and led lights that can be bought to wear at nighttime. I am personally a big fan flashy shoelaces and armbands as they are both functional and so darn fun.
Limit the music. I never go running without my iPhone playing my favorite songs. However, I usually only run with 1 earpiece in my ears. This allows me to not only hear the beeps alerting me of my run/walk ratio on my Garmin watch, but it allows me to be able to hear what is going on around me. It is important to see and hear the environment around you. This could mean only wearing 1 earpiece like me, having your music turned down low or forgoing the MP3 player altogether.
A well-lit route. It is important when running at night to use a route that is not secluded and well lit. This will allow you to be seen easily and to be found easily should and injury requiring help occur.