National Running Safety Month: Advice from Jennifer Cassetta
November 10th, 2014
November is National Running Safety Month and here at
Happy National Running Safety Month!
Extra props to all of you living in cold weather states and still running outdoors. I’m living in Los Angeles these days where we are still experiencing weather in the 80’s. Wherever you are, bundle up, and always keep safety at the top of your mind while heading outdoors for training. Here are my top 3 tips to stay safe while reaching for your goals:
1. Always tell someone when and where you are heading out for your run/hike.
Whether you’re going to the local track or out for a trail run, be sure someone else knows. There are still many places in the states that have poor cell service and if you were in danger, you wouldn’t be able to call 911. For example, for long stretches of time while I’m trail running in the Santa Monica Mountains, I have no service and I am extra aware of my surroundings. Before I leave, I let my boyfriend know which trail I will be on and about how long it will take me. When I’m finished, I check in with a text so he knows to expect me home shortly afterward. I encourage you to do the same and keep in contact with someone, especially if your training program involves remote and desolate areas.
2. Keep well lit.
As daylight hours decrease, the chances of your outdoor training in the dark may increase. Whether you are heading outdoors for a run in the early morning or evening, be sure that cars and cyclists can see you coming. I love the array of blinking LED lights from Nathan Sports that you can clip onto your clothes so drivers know to give you plenty of room.
3. Train with a buddy.
Not only is it safer to run with a partner, it also keeps you motivated and can even enhance your performance. Yes, schedules can be difficult to sync with friends but four eyes are better than two when it comes to keeping aware. Also, predators are much more likely to attack a single person than multiple people. Also, if you happen to have just a pinch of competitiveness in you, running with a partner may keep you running faster just to keep that edge!
Bonus Tip: Refuel Smarter.
After a long run it can be tempting to eat anything in sight, but if you want to train smarter, you’ll think about the impact of your nutrition for your next run. Eating a snack or meal after your running session that contains clean protein and carbohydrates is best. Since I run in the morning, I always make a smoothie afterward. The flavors change throughout the year but they always contain a plant based protein powder, fruit and/or veggies and nuts or seeds. Here’s my current favorite smoothie combo:
About Jennifer: Jennifer is a clinical nutritionist, personal trainer and 3rd degree black belt. She created the popular Stilettos and Self Defense DVD series and has been featured on The Doctors, Bethenny and Marie Osmond and even taught Princess Leia herself, self-defense on The Today Show. She’s been published on the Huffington Post and writes for Livestrong.com. Recently Jennifer co-authored her first book, Hear Me Roar: How to Defend Your Mind, Body and Heart Against People Who Suck and is traveling the country teaching safety and self-defense at colleges and corporations. Meet her at www.jennifercassetta.com