What’s better than going for a run or walk outside? Not much in my book. I love the gym and using cardio equipment when necessary, but my favorite workouts are those I can do outside.
That said, if possible, I run outside despite the dangers and traffic. In my view the benefits of running outside outweigh the dangers. You can, however, minimize the dangers with these 6 running safety tips.
1. Not wearing headphones when running in busy streets. I know music is a wonderful accompaniment, but if there is a lot of traffic, you simply are less aware of traffic. It’s not illegal to wear headphones, but it is nevertheless a safety issue.
2. Know the rules of the road in your area. Some places have more road rules in favor of pedestrians – yet there are rules nevertheless. Use crosswalks and traffic signals. Avoid jay-running. Keep a look-out for traffic at all times.
I’m always scouting out trails and side-streets for my running routes so I can avoid having to be so vigilant.
3. If it’s sunny, wear sun block or something to protect your skin, especially if you’re going on a long run. I know the lotion is annoying if it gets in your eyes, but in the long-run it’s better for your skin. I often run with a shirt wrapped around my head to keep sweat and sun block from getting in my eyes.
4. Wear sunglasses if it’s sunny. Sunglasses will protect your eyes and give you better visibility by avoiding sharp glare.
5. When running at night, put something that reflects light on your body – preferably on the front and back of you. The fact is, motorists simply don’t see pedestrians in the dark.
6. Stay hydrated. If you’re doing any long-distance running, bring water with you. You can get dehydrated before you know it.
As runners we’re lucky because we enjoy the outdoors. It feels good and I believe it is good for us to be outside. Running outside is a great activity for health and wellbeing. Avoid injury and harm by practicing safe running techniques.
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