Fall has officially begun in the Northern Hemisphere, decreasing the number daylight hours and increasing the number of dark hours.
So unless you’re a full time professional athlete, chances are, much of your running over the next few months will take place in the hours of darkness.
True, you may not get to enjoy the same distant views, but there are good reasons to love running at night, says elite trail runner Gediminas Grinius – who trains on top of his full time job. Here are his top 7 reasons to put on your headtorch and high visibility jacket and get out the door for a night run!
Aside from working full time, Gediminas is also a father of two. © Gediminas Grinius
Explore your wild side
At night your senses are more attuned says Gediminas. “With less of an emphsis on vision, you become more alert to your surroundings and that brings out your wild side, especially when alone. And that’s the best remedy after a long day in the office.”
Escape the heat
Running in warm temperatures isn’t all great, says this year’s Transgrancanaria winner. “Running at night lets you avoid the day’s heat,” he says, “which is better for training”.
Find new beauty
“Running at night breaks up the routine and you can find new beauty in the same trails – especially for those like me who don’t have a lot of hills to train on.”
Avoid the traffic
Turn your commute into training, says Gediminas. “That way you avoid the traffic and you beat the ‘no time for sport’ excuse. Commuting to the office in the winter months means running in the dark is unavoidable,” he adds.
Prepare for ultras
Use night running to prepare for an ultra. “Almost all 100 mile races have a night element in it,” he says. And for regular trail runners, most 100 km races have a night element as well!”
Improve your technical downhills
“While running at night you must trust your sixth sense more often,” says Gediminas. “Sometimes your feet are your only sensors on the ground and you have to turn your brain off and trust your feet to know where to step. This is exactly the same as when you have to run on technical terrain so running at night is a good way to make you better on super technical downhills.”
Unleash the dog!
“Zoro is my best running partner and the enjoys freedom as much as I do, but because of a lot of distractions during the day (people, other dogs) it's the best time to set him free at night.”