Staying Safe During Winter Runs

Snow, ice, darkness—there are a lot of perils that await you on winter runs.


Now that the days are getting shorter and darker, it’s really important to make sure that you are as safe as possible when running. Be sure you’re following these tips to help you stay safe during winter runs.

  • Use some kind of reflective gear when you run in the dark. And with less daylight, chances are you will be running in the dark quite often. You can buy tons of reflective gear – from arm bands to headbands to lights that clip on to your clothes. I just purchased this Oiselle vest which has reflective detailing across the front – functional yet stylish and functional.
  • Figure out what you will do in snow and ice. For many of us, winter brings with it conditions that are less than ideal to run in. Decide early on if you will take it inside during poor weather conditions or if you’ll deal with the elements. If the latter, prepare yourself. Make sure you have good gear for all conditions. Think about buying something to give your shoes extra traction in snow or ice. I’m seriously thinking about buying yaxtrax this year. But I also have a backup gym membership so I can make it to a treadmill.
  • Run with a buddy. This is extra important if you’ll be running in slippery or very cold conditions. You don’t want to get caught alone in a bad snow storm. As someone who’s gotten lost on a snowy and icy 22 mile run before, trust me on this one. It is NOT fun. Also consider carrying your phone. I don’t normally run with my phone but it was extremely helpful on that 22 mile run I just mentioned. I literally had to google my location in order to figure out where I took a wrong turn. Had I not had my phone, it would have been a bad day.
  • Tell someone where you will be running and how long they should expect you’ll be gone. If you live alone, then shoot a text to a friend saying that you’re going for a run and you’ll text her when you’re back. Again, if you get caught in a bad snowstorm and no one knows where to look for you, you could be in trouble. My motto is always better safe than sorry!

These are all good things to do anytime of year, but I think a few of these are extra important during the winter running season. What tips would you add?

More great articles from Eat Pray Run DC
How To Prepare For Winter Running
How To Motivate Yourself To Run In The Winter