Night Racing Tips

night racing running road safety tips injury prevention

Written by runnergirl training

Racing at night is a whole different experience compared to day races. Night racing includes consideration of factors such as safety, ability to see the contours of the road, judging distance between other runners, etc. Check out these 3 tips below to make your night race a glowing success!

Problem: Pacing
When it is dusk or dark outside the ability to judge your pace is diminished. You may be unable to see objects like trees or buildings to guess your pace. You will be relying on a heart rate monitor or smartphone app to monitor pace. You may wonder why it is significant to be aware of the pace of running. If you run faster than your training or intended race pace you may run of energy too early, become dehydrated, or sustain an injury (pulled muscle, etc). A huge component of racing is pacing.

Solution: Smartphone app or heart rate monitor with GPS

Problem: Road Conditions
When the sun goes down it becomes difficult to see the road. Most roads aren’t flat or smooth. At night, potholes, turns, rocks, trash and uneven surfaces can become a safety hazard. In the day a pothole is something you would simple dodge. In the night, the pothole can make you roll an ankle or fall.

Solution: Headlamp or flashlight

Problem: Pre-Race Eating Schedule
Typically, races are in the morning so you eat a light pre-race snack. A night race can throw off the pre-race eating. Make sure to eat 200-300 calories 1-2 hours before the race. Some people need a lightweight stomach before running so avoid a heavy lunch that may take hours to digest. Make sure to drink water during the day to prepare for the race. Drink around 16 oz in the 1-2 hours before the race. During the race, drink 5-12 oz every 20 minutes.

Solution: A snack of 200-300 calories & 16 oz of fluid (water) 1-2 hours before the race.

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