Tips for running at night

Tips for running at night

I was driving home from work the other day and saw two different people running along a somewhat busy road at about 5:45 pm. During the summer this wouldn’t be a problem, but with snow on the ground and earlier sunsets, it was already dark. This is pretty standard for northeast Ohio in the month of November. The one thing that shocked me about both runners is that neither of them had a reflective vest or light on.

There are a few things that every runner or outdoor enthusiast should do when running at night.

  • Reflective Apparel and Footwear
  • Safety Lights
  • Cell Phone
  • Road ID
  • Run in to traffic

Why should you wear reflective apparel/vest?

Reflective apparel is your best friend when running at night. Not only does a reflective jacket protect you from the elements, but it helps motorists see you so they can make sure to avoid being too close. The runners that I mentioned at the beginning of this post were difficult to see and if I wasn’t paying attention, I could have easily been closer to the side of the road where they were running. Having quality apparel that has highly reflective lines will make you “glow” when headlights are approaching you, making you visible and much safer when running at night. Below are the items I wear when running at night.

Here are the best reflective running jacket and vest:

These are just a few of the items I wear to make sure that motorists and others can see me when I am out running. The combination of apparel and lights will definitely make you more visible to others when running at night.

Why should you wear safety lights?

Safety lights are another great way to be more visible when running at night. I have recently started using the Cyclops Micro Mini LED light because its not only powerful, but I can’t even feel it. All you have to do is clip it on your hat and you are ready to go. In addition to that light, I clip a light on my shoes, and use the Asics light to put on the front of anything that I am wearing. Wearing all of these make it very difficult not to notice me while running at night.

Safety lights I use:

Why should you have your cell phone when running at night?

Running with your cell phone is a a must for anyone who runs at night. 2 winters ago I was running at night and was stepping off a curb when I looked to my left to see if a car was coming and ended up landing in a pothole. Not only did I roll my ankle, but I couldn’t run. Snow had just started to fall and I was 3 miles away from home with no phone. This was not only scary, but could have been much worse if I couldn’t walk at all. After walking home that night, I told myself I would never run at night without my phone. If I would have had a phone, I could have easily called a friend to come pick me up. In addition to being able to call someone to pick you up, you can also use your phone for directions if you get lost (this has also happened to me).

Why should you wear a Road ID?

If you follow me on Twitter, you know that I often tweet Road ID deals. I do this because they are the easiest and cheapest way to save your life if something were to happen to you while running or cycling. A Road ID is a bracelet type that contains contact and health information that emergency responders can use to treat you if something were to happen to you.

The Road ID I wear:RoadID Logo

Why should you run in to traffic?

I often see people running with traffic. Doing this during the day is crazy, let alone doing this at night. Running in to traffic is important for a number of different reasons. Running in to traffic allows you to see what is coming at you and provides you the opportunity to move out the way if a car or truck is drifting over towards the side of the road. Drivers are often distracted and if you run with traffic you will never have the opportunity to get out of the way. Running into traffic with a LED hat light or any other light will provide motorists the ability to see you much better than if you were running with traffic.

Combining all of these suggestions will not only make you safer when running at night, but will allow you to enjoy running at night! Hopefully this blog was helpful and provided you some ideas to make you more visible. If you have any questions or suggestions for this site, please contact me!

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Let me know if you have questions, comments, or feedback!

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