7 safety tips for running in the dark
Ghosts, ghouls, vampires and other foul creatures lurking for their chance for a trick or treat, pumpkins with scary grimaces on every corner, and in the TV movies like Halloween, Poltergeist, and Hocus Pocus that add to the atmosphere - it's Halloween time! And since we are closing up on the cold winter months the days get shorter and shorter, so there's often no alternative to working out in the dark. But don't worry - we've got 7 tips for you that will chase away all the evil spirits and make running just as safe and sound as always.
1. Flashy eye-catching running gear
A long time ago, when I was in first grade, every student got a flashy yellow peaked cap that made it easy to be seen in the dark - a simple way to stay visible, which works just as fine for adults! Apply this measure when running in the dark because standing out is key. Usually, running clothes are black and inconspicuous and therefore hard to spot. Now it's time to bring out the bright colors - in the dark, there is no too flashy. Neon colors in particular are great for being seen in the dark and increase your safety.
2. Reflectors brighter than a shooting star
In addition to eye-catching clothing, other light sources on your body guarantee good visibility. It is important that your reflectors are illuminated from all sides and can thus be made visible from 360°. Reflectors on the arms, legs, back and chest - reflectors everywhere! You simply cannot overuse them since they're a great way to make other road users to recognize you as a moving person and to better assess your speed and movement patterns.
3. Don't lose sight of what's ahead
Not only does it make you visible to others, but it also helps you see potential tripping hazards or other obstacles from a distance. You minimize your risk of injury and increase your visibility at the same time. Since the light cone moves with your head, it may take some time to get used to the wiggling light on your forehead. But it will definitely help you to reach your destination safely, especially on dark sections of your running route.
4. Check the route
For running in the dark you should try to avoid impassable routes through the forest, or generally unpaved paths without lighting. Traffic-calmed, asphalted or paved paths with good lighting are best. Ideally, you already know the route well and do not leave it to test unknown paths. If you still want to try a new route, check it out beforehand via a navigation app or on the Internet to avoid unforeseen surprises as much as possible.
5. Bring your cell phone
In case you get lost in the dark, twist your ankle, or have any other emergency, be sure to take your cell phone with you on your runs in the dark. This way you can locate yourself if necessary, or quickly contact the outside world for help. Put your cell phone in a pocket on your pants or in your jacket pocket so that you can reach it quickly.
6. Run with your buddies
Together you are less alone! Running isn't necessarily a solo sport-if you feel safer that way, you should train in the dark with a running partner. You can alert each other to dangers, or get help if a problem arises. If you go without a human running partner, an animal companion will work just as well. In any case, if you are alone, you should let at least one person know where you are and when you started. You can also use the live tracking feature of your running app.
7. The sound of silence
Even if loud music motivates you and pushes you to break your limits, when training in the dark you should avoid it or at least turn down the volume so that you can still hear unusual noises, traffic and everything that's happening in the background. Since you can rely less on your eyes in the dark than usual, you should also sharpen your hearing sense. Save your best time attempts for a run in the light!
With these tips, training in the dark should no longer pose a challenge. It takes more preparation and requires more attention on your part, but it's definitely a nice way to train in peace and to add some variety to your workout. Also, always trust your instincts during these runs. If something feels weird on your run, or your body is showing unusual signs, don't force it and postpone your workout until another day.
Again this year, the monsters, ghosts and witches start their virtual run: dress up as a ghost or a zombie and scare the hell out of everyone who crosses your path! Whether alone or with friends and family, this year it's trick or treat time at our exclusive Halloween Run! Fun for the whole family!
Sign up now because spots are filling up fast for this coveted run!
Picture 1: oneinchpunch via Adobe Stock
Picture 2 : Diego Jimenez via unsplash
Picture 3 : Tomasz Woźniak via unsplash
Picture 4 : Tikkho Maciel via unsplash