Introduce Night Running Into Your Training Routine

24 Mar 2021

Now that we’ve “sprung forward” into Daylight Saving Time and the days are getting longer, it’s easier to get a post-work run in before the sun sets. But what about when a short run is not enough, and you want to kick your running regimen up a notch?

If you’re training for a 24-hour running event like the 5x5K FOR GOOD, you’ll want to work some nighttime (or early morning) running into your routine, so you feel comfortable and safe hitting the road under the glow of the street lights.

Here’s how to keep it safe (and fun!).

  1. Get a headlamp, an LED armband and/or safety lights. If you register for the full 5x5K challenge, you’ll get a custom Polestar headlamp when you get to the event—and it’s yours to keep! But you may want to purchase your own beforehand.
  2. Dress smart. Wear light colored, reflective clothing that keeps you visible. Layer up to stay warm as the temperature dips. Also—even though it’s dark out, you may still want a cap or visor to help shield you from glaring car headlights.
  3. Be extra smart about traffic. In the daylight, it’s easier to make eye contact with drivers and get a sense of where they are looking. When running near cars, assume the drivers don’t see you, and make it your responsibility to stay out of their way.
  4. Plan and scout a route. You don’t want to get caught lost in the night, or down a dark dead end. Scout your route in the daytime so you know every turn in advance. Use an app like Rungo or Strava to find a route near you.
  5. Keep your energy up. Join a scheduled run on the Charge app, and the upbeat music plus the live running coaching will keep you energized and alert. If you do run with earbuds, though, don’t crank the volume so loud you can’t hear your surroundings.
  6. Bring a buddy. And a charged phone. Both are a good help in case of getting lost or encountering danger. If you are running alone, use an app like RoadID or bSafe or Strava’s “beacon” function to provide GPS tracking to a friend or family member who can follow you on your route and make sure you get home safely.

Whether you’re joining the 5x5K FOR GOOD in person in Dallas, or as part of our live virtual race, you may find the nighttime or early morning run the best part of the challenge. So get training!