Safety Tips for Early Bird Runners | Brilliant Reflective Review

Disclaimer: I received Brilliant Reflective strips to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador) and check out to review find and write race reviews!

As the warmer months are approaching, the sun is rising a little bit earlier each day - praise the Lord! The mornings of complete darkness had me feeling like a nocturnal creature.

Waking up to run in the dark morning hours isn't the most appealing choice (versus staying cozy in bed) but watching the sunrise and listening to the birds sing makes me glad that I did get up and running.

I am an early bird runner at heart. I can't promise it happens like that every day but I do enjoy running in the early AM. Getting outside before the kids are awake and the day has officially begun works best for my family.

The town feels so quiet and peaceful. It feels like I have the whole place to myself! (There really aren't many runners around here. Maybe 3.)

The only downside to running early is that it's usually dark. In the winter, it's really really dark. Thankfully in the spring it's only dark for 30 minutes or so of my run.

Running in the dark does seem scary to some but it doesn't have to be. With thought put into it and the right gear, it is possible to run in the dark safely!

Safety Tips for Early Bird Runners

1. Stick to Well-Lit Routes

Running by street lights will make it easier for vehicles to see you and you will be able to avoid any road obstructions like potholes, cones, or small dogs (seriously, they pop out of nowhere!). If you don't have a well lit route near by, carry a head lamp or handheld light such as Knuckle Lights with as you run.

2. Keep Someone in the Loop

Whether it's your spouse, friend, parent or coworker, let someone know when and where you will be running, your expected ETA and consider carrying your phone on the run too. Every morning that I go out, I poke my husband and tell him when I'll be back. I'm not sure he actually hears me, as he's a pretty sound sleeper, but I try at least :)

3. Be Seen

Wear bright, reflective clothing. The more reflective-neony goodness, the better! I wear a reflective vest when I run and some running gear has reflective strips built in. For my gear that doesn't have built in reflective strips, I have found a new handy tool.

As a BibRave Pro, I received Brilliant Reflective stick-on and iron-on reflective strips and have added them to my running jacket, my running shoes and tights. I need to get some more for my dog's collar and leash, too! These strips make my favorite gear reflective and save me from having to buy new equipment. Hang tight for more details on Brilliant Reflective strips!

4. Run Defensively

No matter how awesomely reflective your gear is, assume that the vehicles DO NOT see you. Even in our tiny town, people are in a hurry in the morning and aren't paying attention to anyone but themselves. Honestly, it drives me up a wall!

Keep your eyes peeled and always assume they won't stop for you or that stop sign. I've seen many mornings when cars don't stop because they think no one is around.

5. Please, No Audio!

Others may disagree with me on this point but I err on the side of caution. When running in the dark, I DO NOT listen to my iPod. I know there are super cool ear buds out there that enable you to hear your surroundings better but, personally, I want to hear everything. It's important to keep your eyes and ears open to hear vehicles or people approaching.

Are you an early bird runner or think you want to try it out?

I highly recommend checking out Brilliant Reflective's website. I used their purple strips in both stick-on and iron-on form. The stick-ons are semi-permanent meaning they can be applied and taken off in the future if needed. The iron-ons are permanent and will stay on even through the wash. Actually, my stick-on ones lived through the washing machine as well!

Brilliant Reflective's strips are made with retroflective 3M™ Scotchlite™ Reflective Material meaning the light bounces off the reflective and goes back to the light source. One pack is $9.95 with FREE SHIPPING and the strips are available in purple, red, black and blue. I used my two packs to cover my coat, tights and shoes.

These strips are quality, affordable and your safety is definitely worth it! Use the code "BIBRAVEPRO25" for 25% off your order until Tuesday (4/11/17) 11:59pm CT.

Join us for Brilliant Reflective #BibChat  on Twitter on APRIL 11 at 8 PM CST for a chance to win!

Hot Chocolate 15k Training Week 6:


3.25 mi, 00:30 @ 09:16 pace. Too foggy to run with the double stroller so I opted for the treadmill.


Stretching time and walks with the kids.


6.25 mi, 01:01 @ 09:45 pace. This counts as my long run for the week. I figured I should take advantage of the days when I feel good, plus the weather was absolutely gorgeous!


Stretching and basically a rest day. Bible study that morning and a late night after our MOPS meeting that evening. Late nights tire me out more than they used to.


3.25 mi, 00:31 @ 09:36 pace Early morning run before a busy day of homeschool co-op and a fun girls' night of Italian food and ballet!


Rest day. I woke up absolutely wiped after the past two busy days and slept in instead of running. We attended a funeral that afternoon and took it easy the rest of the day.


Rest day.

When is your prime time to run? Morning, afternoon, night? 

Linking up with Holly and Tricia's Weekly Wrap Up.


  1. I prefer not to run in the dark because I am pretty night blind...but when I do have to I stick to a well-lit route AND wear a headlamp! Plus defensive running is a necessity at all times of day, unfortunately.

    1. I agree, Hannah - defensive running is a must!

  2. Great tips! I am a morning runner and have been running in the dark. Those stick on reflective strips seem cool! I wear a lighted vest and use runlites when I run in the dark.

    1. Thanks, Sherry! They are so easy to adhere. I'm thankful I was able to add reflective strips to my non-reflective running coat :)

  3. I run in the dark all the time (well, sometimes it's light depending on spring/fall time changes). I wear a LED flashing armband. But, I think the light disappears when I run under a street lamp - it only works in complete darkness. At least these strips would reflect a car's light. I like the idea of a stick-on. Thanks for linking, Amy!

    1. Your LED flashing armband and Brilliant Reflective strips would make a great team! I do like the idea of running with a light as well as reflective gear. Better safe than sorry!


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