Top tips for night running
There’s something magical about venturing into night-time nature. Whether you are running in an organised Night Run event, or simply running by yourself, you gain a new perspective of the world at night.
Heading out on an evening run is a great way to unwind. Deer, badgers, or a family of foxes might cross your path, while a bat or an owl or two might be spotted overhead.
Some of our outdoor places are accessible after dusk, giving you the chance savour the twilight atmosphere as you explore ancient woodland and historic landscapes (Remember to first check opening times before planning your visit).
For those looking for something more competitive we also hold our exclusive Night Run series of events giving you the opportunity to race along routes that will take you past gothic mansions, through Tudor gardens and tranquil parkland.
Taking place from October through to March these organised events offer a gentle of 1-3km run, as well as a longer 6-9km route – all safely marked out for you.
To get you run ready, we’ve worked with our friends at Cotswold Outdoor, our official outdoor retailer, to bring you these top night running tips:
Light layers are advisable for night-runs, as is a lightweight waterproof jacket, just in case. Try to avoid wearing cotton, as it retains moisture and can become uncomfortable (and chilly). Clothing made from wicking fabric can be perfect as it pulls the moisture away from the skin, helping you cool down.
Know your route
" Running brings a cathartic freedom you can’t experience with other sports. Nothing can stop you throwing on a pair of trainers and seeing where the trail takes you. Don’t be afraid to push your limits, if you don’t try you’ll never know what you’re capable of."
The sounds of silence
It’s advisable to avoid running with headphones, or listening to music on a night run. You need all your senses working to be aware of other runners and, animals or traffic when it’s darker. It also means you can enjoy the sounds of the outdoors at night, whether it’s a squeaking bat, whooping owl or clicking cricket.
Shine bright like a diamond
It may sound obvious, but you’re going to need a torch. Most regular runners will invest in a head torch, keeping their hands free and weight balanced. Consider brightness and beam length, this will enable you to see what’s coming up along the trail. While we are on the subject of shining, embrace bright and reflective kit to stay visible.
" Our run was held at Saltram House in Plymouth... It was really good to see floods of people signing up right up until the run began. Everybody with smiles on their faces even with the cold setting in as the sun set. Even when the run began people stayed to support their friends, family, and even strangers."
Get some expert advice
Don’t forget, National Trust members receive 15 per cent discount* at Cotswold Outdoor, in store and online.
*This is not to be used in conjunction with any other offer or discount. Selected lines are exempt. This offer is redeemable on production of your National Trust membership card in store or email firstname.lastname@example.org with your National Trust membership number to receive a discount code to use online. Offer expires 31.12.17.