“A person should set his goals as early as he can and devote all his energy and talent to getting there. With enough effort, he may achieve it. Or he may find something that is even more rewarding. But in the end, no matter what the outcome, he will know he has been alive.” - Walt Disney

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Dark Side

With summer winding down and fall quickly approaching, the sun is appearing later each morning and leaving us in the dark earlier every evening.  Even at the peak of summer you have to get up before the crack of dawn to beat the heat (at least around here you do).  But running in the dark can be dangerous.  So what's a runner to do?

Sure, you could do all your morning or evening runs on the treadmill, but that's no fun.  Which means...you need to be prepared to run in the dark!  A good article about safely running in the dark was recently posted by a local running club on facebook and I'm sharing it here:

Take a minute to read the article - it's got some VERY important safety tips!  I never run alone in the dark, so some of the items didn't really apply to my personal situation, but very often my running group starts our Saturday long runs in the pre-dawn hours.  So as I was going through each item, I made a point to evaluate my personal choices when I run in the dark.

Having a well-lit route, running against traffic, running with a buddy, carrying a cell phone and I.D., and being mindful of your surroundings are all extremely important, but as I see it, the NUMBER ONE item on the list is to MAKE YOURSELF VISIBLE!!!  Other runners, bikers, cars, etc. need to be able to see you!  When we're running in the dark, I have the following items on me to help with this:

  • My Hat Clip Light for the bill of my visor.  This baby is small and light (I don't even know it's there) but powerful!  I can see the ground in front of me and anyone in the oncoming direction can't miss me!
  • Clip-on LEDs for the back of my visor band and the back of my water belt.  I jokingly refer to these as my "blinky butts" since they are on my back side...lol.
  • I also try to make sure that I'm wearing light-colored or reflective clothing to make me more visible.

Do you run in the dark?  Did the article make you re-evaluate any of your choices?  Do you have any "must-have" items for your dark runs?  Do you do anything the article doesn't mention that you'd like to share?

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