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10 Safety Tips for Running at Night

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Running at night can be a great way to unwind after a long day, but catching the last few minutes of daylight in time for a run can be tough if you work a typical 9-5 job, especially in the winter. While the setting sun should never keep you from a good run, nighttime runners need to take a few extra precautions, since the lack of daylight means more danger from vehicles, unpredictable terrain, weather and attackers. Below are ten tips for staying safe while enjoying your nighttime run!

10. Plan Ahead

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Before heading out for your evening run, make sure you know exactly what to expect, so you can properly prepare for less-than-ideal conditions, if necessary. Check the weather, so you know if you’ll be heading out into freezing temps or if you should expect a downpour halfway through your run. While you may not be able to account for every possibility, being as prepared as possible and taking a few extra precautions will result in a safer and more enjoyable run.

9. Forget the Headphones

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Running at night requires taking extra precautions and making sure you’re aware of your surroundings at all times. Running with headphones or ear buds in your ears and your music on blast means you won’t be able to hear approaching cars and will likely be more distracted than if you ran without the headphones. Try using your nighttime run to clear your head and focus on your surroundings as a form of meditation, and save the headphones and workout mix for the gym.

8. …But Take Your Phone

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If you injure yourself, get lost or find yourself in a dangerous situation, your cell phone can be your best friend. While running at night with ear buds stuffed in your ears isn’t a good idea, keep that armband to carry your phone with you in case of emergency and try to stay on a route that gives you a clear cell phone signal. Don’t forget to turn off your notifications, however, so you aren’t distracted with beeps and rings every few minutes when you should be focusing on your run!

7. Clue Others In

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Just as you’d normally let a friend know where you plan to meet a blind date, you should always let someone know the route you’ll be running and how long you expect to be gone, especially if you’ll be out running after dark. Even better, link up with someone on an app like MapMyRun, which allows you to share your running routes in advance, so your friend or family member can easily locate you if something goes wrong or you don’t return when expected.

Kara is more than just a do-it-all writer; she's also a jetsetter who has experienced cities and cultures around the world! Find Kara on LinkedIn!

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