Night Exercising: Your Safety and Security

Night Exercising can be amazing.  There is nothing but you and the exercise in most of the places you will encounter.  This means you can be you while you are running, there is no one watching you.  However, exercising at night brings out its own difficulties and obstacles that you must overcome for your safety and security.  These tips will help you stay safe while night exercising.

Night Exercising Tip #1: Be Visible

While wearing dark colors during any outdoor exercising can be dangerous it is especially dangerous at night.  Cars, trucks, and other vehicles will have a very difficult time seeing you while night exercising if you wear dark colors.  Try to wear as many vibrant colors as possible.  Vibrant colored shoes never hurt either, and they are fun!  I love my pair of bright colored shoes.

Wearing a reflective vest will boost your visibility exponentially.  I have a reflective vest like this one.  It is small and doesn’t easily get in the way.  You can wear it over just about anything.  I probably don’t wear it as much as I should but its a great tool when it is used.

Run, walk, or otherwise night exercise against traffic.  This will allow you to see anything that is coming your way without having to look behind you.  But just because you are expecting traffic coming from in front of you, make sure to check behind you.  More DUI accidents happen at night than they do during the day.

Night Exercising Tip #2: Headphone Safety

When you are out night exercising you should not wear headphones but I won’t blame you if you do.  I do too.  What you should do is be safe wearing them.  Keep the volume low and only put in one ear piece.  Alternatively, you can get a set of headphones like these that leave your ears free.  I have a set of basic Bluetooth headphones that have a neckpiece to hold the ear pieces.

As a general rule of thumb you should be able to hear someone stepping lightly behind you.  You should also be aware if a car is coming behind you at a crosswalk.

If you are going to have earbuds in it is always better to be talking on the phone than to be listening to music.  This allows anyone who may be watching you to know that there is someone else involved.  If they were to come after you, they know someone would be ready to call the police for you.

Night Exercising Tip #3: Be Aware of Your Surroundings

You have probably been told that you should be aware of your surroundings, it is true.  Even more so at night.  When night exercising you should keep your head on a swivel.  Keep your eyes checking your surroundings to make sure that there is no one walking close behind you and no cars following you despite the fact you are walking/running way below the speed limits.

It is an unfortunate but true fact that you need to be wary of other people.  Night time, especially in cities, is home to people who want to make money off what you own.

Night Exercising Tip #4: Keep it Shorter

By keep it shorter I don’t mean that you need to take a shorter night exercise but you should use a shorter route as many times as you want.  Being closer to home makes it easy to get back home if you need to.  It also means that you will be able to notice something out of the normal quicker.  You can do many laps on a short path and still get a workout.

When considering the path of your workout you should also think about lighting.  Your night exercise route should be well lit so that you can see your surroundings and others can see you.  If you can’t find a well-lit place to run in, try adding lights to your clothes.  If your night exercising includes riding a bike you have no excuse.

Night Exercising Tip #5: Bring A Buddy

Exercising with a body is always fun.  Night exercising is both more fun and safer with a buddy.  Find someone who likes working out at night as much as you do and always go with them.  If you don’t know someone who likes night exercise you can find a group online.  There are plenty of Meetup groups out there.  You will also be more visible at night when you bring a buddy.  The more people you can find, the better.

If you aren’t running with a buddy make sure someone knows when and where you are going.  Share your exact route with a friend and if you deviate from it, text or call them.

Night Exercising Tip #6: Be Smart

No matter what you do the most important thing to remember when night exercising is to be smart.  If something doesn’t feel right, get out of there.  Also, if you think there is something you should do for your safety, do it.

Safety first, last, and always.

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