How can you help ensure you exercise safely when it’s dark outside?

Whether you are a long-time fitness enthusiast or you have only just got into a workout routine recently, the winter months may present you with certain challenges and worries. One of these might be the task of ensuring you both feel and are safe while out exercising. 

This is sadly an issue that women, in particular, still have to think about and deal with. Indeed, you may have been deterred from exercising in the dark yourself in the past, due to fears of being catcalled or worse while simply attempting to pursue your exercise routine. 

But during a time of year when it gets dark at 4pm, the advice to simply “try to exercise when it’s light outside” may seem less than helpful. So, what tips would we suggest to anyone wishing to ensure they continue their workout regime during the winter, while keeping themselves safe? 

Avoid wearing earphones 

Many of us love to listen to our favourite tunes in the gym, and cranking up the volume may well help drive your motivation even higher! Sadly, though, it might not be such a wise thing to do when exercising outside. This can be especially so during the winter, when loud music may prevent you from easily hearing approaching footsteps or traffic that you need to be aware of. 

If you really do want to listen to those hit songs or your latest must-listen podcast while exercising outside, we would suggest wearing just one earphone. This will help ensure you are still alert to any threats in your environment. 

Consider a ‘buddy system’ 

Even if you don’t do this strictly for safety reasons, it can be a great idea to ‘pair up’ with someone else for your sessions out running or partaking in other outdoor exercise. After all, you won’t just be helping each other to keep a lookout for threats, as you will also be able to act as cheerleaders for each other, while aiming to set new personal bests. 

Run against the flow of traffic 

If you are running along a footpath, choosing the path on the same side as oncoming traffic will help make you more visible to cars. And the greater your visibility when exercising outside in the dark, the safer you will be – hence why you should also stick to well-lit areas and wear bright or fluorescent clothing. 

Keep away from wet or unstable terrain 

A lot of people like to run through their local park or even the woods during the summer, but it’s much less sensible to do this in the winter months. That’s partly because of what we touched on above, as these areas tend to be poorly lit and don’t keep you clearly visible to passing cars or pedestrians. 

Another reason to avoid these areas during your winter exercise routine is because getting your trainers wet can increase the chances of you slipping. Darker conditions may also make you more prone to tripping over, which is a particular risk on unstable ground. 

Complement your outdoor training with online classes and 24-hour gyms 

The COVID-19 pandemic has helped to make online fitness classes from home a much more mainstream option – so it’s well worth investigating which classes of this nature may be available to you during the colder and darker months. It’s also a good idea to look into any 24/7 gyms near you, if your schedule only allows you to work out at less-than-ideal times of the day or night. 

As a trusted independent brand providing a wide range of fitness gear for women and men, Hybryd is well-placed to help ensure you are comfortable and confident during your workouts this winter. So why not browse our store now for your new favourite exercise apparel, in the knowledge that all postage to UK addresses is also free

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