There’s a certain joy and peace associated with running at night. To look up into the nighttime sky and see the stars twinkling back at you makes an evening run all the more enjoyable. But when you run at night you also need to take extra precautions to protect yourself against injury so you can stay injury free and healthy to enjoy future outings. Here’s how to run safely at night:
Wear reflective clothing.
Wearing protective clothing just might save your life. If you’re not wearing reflective gear, cars have a hard time seeing you and may be unable to stop quickly enough when they do. It may not be the fashion statement you were looking for but reflective clothing is a small precaution that can pay off big.
Let someone know where you’ll be running.
Because running at night is inherently more risky, let someone you know and trust know your route and approximately how long you’ll be gone. If you don’t return within a reasonable time, they can take the car and look for you.
Run indoors during bad weather
Running on treadmills isn’t everyones cup of tea but running at night when you can’t see the pavement is tricky enough without adding additional factors such as a wet or slick surface. If the streets and sidewalks are wet, head indoors.
Run with someone
For an additional element of safety, consider running with a jogging partner after dusk. Not only will running with a partner make your run more enjoyable, it may also deter interlopers who may not have good intentions.
Take a flashlight.
Duh…but lots of people don’t follow this simple rule. A small hand-held flashlight is useful for illuminating the ground as well as alerting oncoming cars of your presence. If you don’t like carrying a flashlight, Road Runner Sports offers a strap on light like the one pictured here.
Double tie your shoes.
Bet you didn’t consider this but It can be difficult to tell when your shoelaces are untied when you run at night. Take some extra time to double tie your shoe lashes or wear running shoes that don’t lace up to avoid tripping during your run.
Choose your route
Choose a well lit evening route where you can look down and see your feet and easily see what’s in front of you. It’s also helpful if you pick a clear night with a full moon to illuminate your path.
Run facing traffic
Lots of people think you should run with the traffic but the advantage to running against traffic at night is that it’s easier to see an oncoming car with its headlights on. By running in the direction of traffic, you can move off the road quickly if a car swerves in your direction.