The weather is colder now and the days are much shorter, which means many runners are forced to run in the dark if daily runs are completed before or after the workday. I am one of them. I've compiled the following tips that have kept me safe on early morning or evening runs:
- Get a light. I am fortunate to be able to run a majority of my runs on a beach boardwalk where there are no cars. However, there are cyclists and other pedestrians who may not see me coming. Any time you are running in the dark, you should have a light of some sort to make it easy for others to see you. I've got the Pro Compression reflective LED armband that works great. Try to wear fabrics that have reflective pieces also.
- Use only one ear bud. I NEED music on my runs. It's motivating and distracts me on long runs. This is dangerous though. I recommend running with one ear bud out and one in if you must listen to music. It will give you enough music to keep going, but allows you to be aware of what's going on around you. If you are running on the road, leave the ear bud out of your ear that is closest to the road so you can hear oncoming cars or cyclists.
- Run with traffic. This will allow any cars making right turns to see you coming towards them as they look back into on-coming traffic. Any cars coming towards you from behind will be able to see your light!
- Take pepper spray. I live in a safe area, but there are always instances where I feel fear. Especially on early morning runs when it's still so quiet. This is just added protection against any attackers.
Always play it safe. As runners, we have to obey the rules of the road and be respectful to others, which also protects us from harm. What else do you do to stay safe when running in the dark?