Running is an amazing cardiovascular workout. One of the best things about this sport is that nearly anyone can participate and all that you need to get started is a pair of running shoes. Before you rouse yourself out of bed at 5 am to hit the pavement, it is important that you understand how to run safely. Here are three tips to ensure that you are practicing safe running habits:
Plan Your Path
Planning your route will help you to anticipate and ward off potential issues. You should be aware of any busy areas, construction, or other issues. Not only is planning your route in advance a good safety precaution to take, but it will also help you to track your distance and speed better. Knowing these numbers will help you to evaluate your progress and become a more efficient runner. Planning your path doesn’t mean you have to run the same route every day, but you should be very familiar with all of the areas you plan to run in.
Always Be Aware of Your Surroundings
Being distracted while walking or running is a growing cause of pedestrian death. There are steps that you should take so that you are more aware of what is going on around you. Don’t listen to music too loudly, always know where to find help, and perform visual checks of your surroundings at all times so that you can boost your awareness while out on the pavement or trails. If you are running early in the morning or late in the evening when it is darker, you should also wear reflective clothing to make yourself more visible. Consider running with just one earbud in so that you can hear traffic or approaching footsteps.
Communicate Your Plan
Before you take off for that run, be sure that somebody else knows where you are going. It is important that you communicate your plan with a trusted friend or family member. You should let them know where your running route will take you and when you should be expected to return. You should also always carry identification on you in case there is an accident and the authorities need to contact your loved ones. If you do not want to carry identification, you can write down identifying information and a contact number in the inside sole of your running shoes.
The more you practice these safety tips, the less vulnerable you will be to potential dangers on the road. Above all, practice common sense and be alert. Getting a good workout is important, but staying safe while doing so is even more critical.
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