Hello running friends! The time changes this weekend, plunging us early am runners back into darkness while allowing the after work crowd some daylight running.
Whether you run with the sun or in the dark it’s always important to be aware of your surroundings. Drivers are distracted. Bike riders and dog walkers also pose a hazard and they may not notice a runner sharing the street.
So here’s a list of my top safety tips.
Lighten Up. When I go out in the morning I wear a reflective vest, snap a blinkie light on my hat or shirt, affix velcro straps around my ankles and carry a Knuckle Light. Cars cannot see you until they are upon you. That teeny little strip of reflection on your shoes? Useless. Get smart and be safe.
Pairs are Perfect. If you are heading into the hills, grab a pal. A lot of our fantastic trails take you deep into the woods or open space. And trust me, when you’re out there you are OUT THERE. If you do go solo then make sure you let someone know when you left and when you expect to be home. And bring your cellphone.
You Lookin’ At Me? You think drivers see you at crosswalks but often times they don’t. In fact, this morning I crossed the street and was midway in the crosswalk when a car approached. I kept going across as the car slowed and immediately had to jump out of the way when this gent rolled through the stop sign. He was that oblivious. So don’t just assume drivers see you. Make eye contact before crossing.
On the Down Low. If you’re running in the dark or on the trails, lower the volume on your NPR podcast. Or take an earbud out. Don’t be oblivious to the sounds around you.
Taking a few safety precautions will ensure that you not have a great run, but that you come back in one piece.
Now go run!