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Light Up Your Run

It's that time again: we've turned the clocks back and suddenly our after-work runs are in the dark. Remember that tired commuters are not always looking out for pedestrians, and even the best driver's vision is impaired in the dark. According to the National Traffic Highway Safety Administration, 75 percent of pedestrian fatalities in traffic crashes occur in the dark. Most of those occur between the hours of 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. during the fall and winter. The risk is nearly as great in the pre-dawn hours, too.

Many running shoes and apparel pieces are made with built-in reflective components, but running safely in the dark requires more than that (those tiny reflective stripes are useless if there's no light to reflect!). In addition to reflectivity, it's important to also have something illuminated on your body, and preferably in front and in back. Light up moving parts: a light on your shoe, one on your arm, and a reflective water bottle will do even more to draw drivers' attention to you.

Here are a few other tips for a safe run in the dark:

  • Run facing traffic. If you can see a car coming, it’s easier to get out of the way.
  • Ditch the earbuds. If you can’t hear a car, you put yourself at a much higher risk of being hit. What’s more, most headphones block out all the other surrounding noise, so you may not notice another approaching pedestrian or cyclist. (Aftershokz, anyone?)
  • Stick to the sidewalk. Staying on the sidewalk will keep you out of the way of drivers who might not see you when the sun is down.

Check out some of our favorite low-light gear below, and we'll see you out there!

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