Tips for Safe Running (and Walking)

November is National Running Safety Month

The shorter days of fall and winter force us out for more early morning and late evening runs in the dark. If you are forced to run in low-light times, be sure to take extra safety precautions. Here are some tips for staying safe:

  1. Be Visible – Runners are hard to see in the dark and can be easily overlooked by a tired or distracted driver. Wearing reflective clothing and lights makes it much easier for drivers to spot you.
  2. Carry ID and a Phone – Carrying some form of identification is a must, especially if you have any medical conditions. You can get a simple SmartTag ID to hook on your shoe for just $2. Even better? Take your phone along. There are several options of phone carrying cases and it’s an easy way to ensure you can always get in touch in case of emergency.
  3. Listen Up – Turn down the music, wear headphones in just one ear or, best yet, don’t listen to music at all. It’s important to hear what is going on around you, especially when it is dark and you can’t see your surroundings as well.
  4. Power in Numbers – Running with a friend or group is not only more fun, but also safer. If you don’t have runner friends or a dog ask a friend to bike along with you while you run.
  5. Switch It Up – Change your running route and time you run every so often. Getting acquainted with the same route over and over again can make you susceptible to letting your guard down and become less aware of what is going on around you.
  6. Look Both Ways – It’s a simple rule we were taught as kids – look both ways before you cross the street –  but one that is easy to skip. Crosswalks, especially those regulated by stop signs are the worst for runners. Drivers will pull out in front of the stop sign looking for cars, but often look right beyond runners. Always make eye contact with the driver before you step off the curb.
  7. Trust your Instincts – if you’re not comfortable going somewhere or something doesn’t seem right – don’t do it!

One Response to Tips for Safe Running (and Walking)

  1. Why is the city paving a path from W. Dearborn Circle to Chevelle through Dearborn Park? That is not a green iniatiative effort. Several trees will be removed at besides its a nature trail not a sidewalk. I spke with Hugh and the ath will be built with some type of porous material, however, has our society come to the point where we can’t even walk on dirt anymore? This is a nature trail!

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