Safety tips: Running at night

Safety tips: Running at night


You are not hitting your mileage, it’s dark and rainy outside and there is no way you are skipping your run for the day. We’ve all been there, it is still winter conditions out on the roads and you cannot miss your training for a bit of darkness.

My mileage goal each week ranges from 20 to 40 miles, depending on where I am in my training. Having a full time job means that most of this mileage is going to be run in the week after work in the dark. In the years spent running on the dark rainy streets of Portland, I have collected this list of tips on how to stay safe while running at night.


Be seen and stay safe. 6 tips for running at night:


Run a familiar route:

Don’t try a new route out at night. The worst thing you could do is get lost or have to backtrack on a road you have never been on before. You want to look like you know where you are and what you are doing at all times.


Don’t wear dark colors at night

This probably seems like a given. But take a look out the next time you are driving around how many people wear black while running. Clothing reflectors do little to help you be seen. Wear bright colors and stay visible.


Run against traffic

At least if they don’t see you, you can see them.


Do not wear headphones 

You want to be able to hear surrounding noises, so if a car or bike rides too close you will be able to hear them.


Wear reflective gear 

LumaGlo is perfect for night time running. But if you have not made the plunge yet and purchased this product, try reflective vests or small flashing bike lights tied to your belt.


Run with a partner, dog or group 

Stay with people or a friend and try not run alone. Be confident and aware of your surroundings at all time.

Jay Bowen

Ultra marathon runner, traveler, mother and writer.