Fleet Feet Sports - Chicago

Shorter Days Call For Bright Lights in this Big City

The time has come: autumn followed by winter aka a tough season for us runners. While our apparel brands make it as comfortable as possible for you to survive a 1 mile to 20+ mile run in the winter, the one thing you need (unless you’re someone who can run mid-day everyday – if that’s you, you’re lucky!) is some sort of safety plan for runs this fall and winter. Let’s face it; as soon as the fall marathon season is over, the runners we see out on the lakefront path are few and far between. The throngs of training groups are long gone. There might be an occasional walker or biker.

That’s where we come in. We’ve got the goods to get you through the harshest seasons. No need to talk winter apparel and accessories quite yet; visibility is key this time of year.

Top 3 Rules for Staying Safe

  1. See. Light up the path you are following to avoid falling, tripping, or other obstacles.
  2. Be Seen. When possible, wear three points of light or reflectivity on your body.
  3. Communicate. Let your lights show other runners, bikers or cars where you are. Use additional safety items to communicate if there are any safety issues.

So, what kinds of things do you need in order to make your runs safe and fun this coming fall and winter? Easy. Just read below.

  1. See.

As mentioned, the first thing you need is something to light your way. You can do this a couple of different ways. We recommend a headlamp, a hat clip, or a handheld running flashlight.

nathan neutron fire rx

Nathan’s brand new Neutron Fire RX Runners’ Headlamp is one of the best in the biz. With a 200 Lumen LED Spotlight, you’ll never lose your way. Additional features can be read here. 

amphipod hat clip

Something super easy and no frills is the Swift-Clip Cap Light from Amphipod. This tiny but powerful light clips on to a brimmed hat to light your path.

nathan zephyr

Another newly updated product from Nathan is the Zephyr Fire 150 Hand Torch (or running flashlight). Powered with AA batteries, this flashlight can run up to 12 hours (in low light mode). Designed to slip over your hand so you don’t have to grip hard…PERFECT! The back of the handheld is a red light to act as your tail-light.

  1. 2. Be Seen.

Of course any of the products above can be your first source of light when running. But you need three. Some running apparel is specifically designed with reflectivity in mind. You’ll notice the hits of reflectivity if you take a picture of your running tee and you get a lot of glare! Our stores do a great job of calling these pieces out. Check it out next time you shop. In addition to apparel, other sources of visibility can be vests, blinky lights, and other things like that. Here’s what we love:

amphipod vizlet

The Amphipod Vizlet clips on anywhere via magnet – we recommend the hemline of a jacket, waistband of shorts/tights, sleeve, or backpack. The options are endless.

amphipod xinglet

The Xinglet Lite is a full 360-degree reflectivity vest that can be worn over anything.  Just clip on and go!

strobe led nathan

The Strobe RX LED light from Nathan gives you options. With Red, Green, Blue colors to optimize visibility we think this rechargeable light is the ticket for success. You can clip it anywhere.

nathan spur

Probably the most unique item we have in store is the Light Spur by Nathan. This LED light clips on to the heel of your shoe to keep you visible from the rear.

  1. 3. Communicate

This is the MOST important part of our safety spiel.

  • Tell a friend or loved one where you are running and how long you are running for
  • Utilize Garmin Connect’s Live Track feature to automatically email your friend or loved one your running route (best feature ever!)
  • Invest in a WearSafe device. Read more here 

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