Keep Up the Pace - 5 Safety Tips for Runners

Running is a great form of aerobic exercise that is good for your heart, lungs, muscles and bones. However, you must be careful if you want to stay safe while you are out running especially if you run on sidewalks and roads around your town. As daylight hours lengthen and you have more time to get outside, follow these five tips for running safely.

Carry Identification

You would not believe how many people head out of their homes for a run without taking their IDs with them. Many running shorts and pants are pocket-free, making it difficult for you to take along a driver’s license, cell phone or other safety information. Consider adding a running belt to your ensemble, which is a more fashion-conscious option to the traditional fanny pack. For an even more streamlined appearance, stash your ID or a paper listing your name and phone number inside your shoe. Should you get hurt, first responders will know who you are and will be able to contact your family.

Stay Alert

It can be easy to get lost in your own thoughts while you are out for a run. However, many accidents and even assaults can occur when men or women are not focused on their surroundings. Consider removing your headphones or at least turning down your music while running. Also, consider changing your route up every few days to throw off any potential stalkers.

Follow Safety Rules

Follow the laws of the road to ensure that you are not part of a pedestrian accident. Always run against traffic, never jaywalk, and cross the road when the traffic light signals you to do so. Make room for other traffic, moving far over on the side of the road to give vehicles a wide berth. If you follow these rules and are still injured, you can file a slip-and-fall or pedestrian injury lawsuit for compensation.

Start with a Warm-Up

Of course, there is more to running safety than just pedestrian safety. You also need to care for your body as you run to avoid injuring your joints and muscles or falling prey to exhaustion or heat stroke. The best way to start your workout is with a warm-up. Start with a moderate-paced walk before amping up to a fast walk and then your normal running speed. Never start with static stretches, as this can pull a muscle. Dynamic stretches, which combine stretching with movement, are fine.

Do Not Overdo It

Your muscles and joints need time to recover in between workouts. Consider having rest days in between your runs, or exercise a different part of your body on these off days. In addition, never increase your mileage by more than 10% per week.

Whether you like to run at day or at night, on level surfaces or hills, in the city or the country, you must be careful while you are running. Always be aware of your surroundings, including the cars and the other people around you. Let running be a fun exercise that keeps you in shape and out of harm’s way.