by Stephanie Buss
When we tackle obstacles, we find hidden reserves of courage and resilience we did not know we had. And it is only when we are faced with failure do we realise that these resources were always there within us. We only need to find them and move on with our lives. ~ A. P. J. Abdul Kalam
Now that our favorite parks and trails are closed due to COVID-19, we need to find more creative ways to get in our run time. Luckily, that is something that running has always taught me: How to overcome obstacles and keep on running.
Personally, I am grateful for the ability to keep running while we are deadling with the effects of coronavirus. That small pocket of time I steal for myself in the morning - before homeschool starts, before I catch up on the news, before reality hits me square in the face - I get one or two blissful hours of just me and my running shoes, and some upbeat music playing in my ears. I love trail running, but since that is not an option anymore, I make my own run routes through my surrounding neighborhoods and take in the scenery.
However, road running is a lot different than trail running, so I asked some of our Asheville Marathon Ambassadors for tips on what to wear, and road running etiquette. What socks give the most cushion? What shoes will make my knees ache less? Here’s what I found out from four women who are long-time, regular runners: Christine Yablonski, Casey Stephens, Alyssa Brown and Lori Le-Roy-Reimer.
Road Running Tip #1: Shoes (socks are important too!)
So what’s the first thing everyone mentioned when talking about road running? Shoes!
Casey Stephens: I wear 361 degree shoes, which support a high arch.
Alyssa Brown: On trail I don’t need this, but on road I need Stability shoes. The Mizuno Wave Inspire are my current shoe.
Lori LeRoy- Reimer: I wear a few different shoes, such as Saucony Freedom, and Brooks Ghost are my go to shoes, I need a heavy cushioned shoe! I also wear men’s for a wider toe box.
Christine Yablonski: Brooks Ghost for road running. I have flat feet and they help support my alignment from my ankles up through my knees. Oh, and I buy wide sizes for the extra room for the toe box. I love Feetures socks as they are cushioned as well.
The right shoe can make all the difference. My knees were really starting to ache until I purchased a new pair of Mizuno Wave Inspires and a new pair of Feetures running socks. Our local running stores are still offering Curbside Pick-up and shipping. Fleet Feet Asheville is offering these services and a virtual 5K training program.
Road Running Tip #2: Safety & Road Etiquette
Of course, staying safe by wearing bright clothing and staying alert is super important as well when you’re running on roads.
Casey Stephens: I’ve been thinking about getting a Nathan SaferRun alarm.
Alyssa Brown: On the road, I run on the left side of the road from traffic so I can jump off the road if cars don’t move over, except in curves where I cross over wherever I’m most visible. I don’t wear two ear buds unless on a deserted road (or I keep volume down) so I can hear cars coming. If someone is coming in both lanes on a two lane road, I jump off the road (because I’ve had cars nearly collide when one moved over for me and didn’t see the car in the other lane). I also wear at least one piece of bright clothing, just got a new orange running shirt! At the behest of my cyclist husband who says I must be visible to cars.
Lori LeRoyo-Reimer: I use Noxgear 360 when it is dark or low light out. I also run with road Id on my shoe. During the day or sunshine I am the girl out there in Fluorescent shirts, the brighter the better!
Christine Yablonski: I always wear neon clothes to protect against cars. I do wear ear buds but the volume is low enough that I can still hear what’s around me. I run on the left side of the road unless I’m on a blind curve or on a long windy mountain side road - then I move to the more visible side/downslope side of the road. I bought a battery powered glo vest that can blink or change colors - I use that on roads where pedestrians wouldn’t be expected. I will wave to oncoming traffic, and if less visible stick my arm out and wave it first, and give “thumbs up thanks” if the drivers take care around me.
Practice social distancing
Running with friends was one of my top ways of staying connected with them, so running alone has been an adjustment. By joining Strava, however, I do have a chance to see what they’re up to, learn new routes, and get a few kudos.
At iDaph we have also started a virtual running group on Fridays starting at 8:30 am. If you own a smartphone, you can download the Google Meet App. Then on Thursdays we will post information to our Facebook and Instagram page on how to to call in. If you’d like to do video during the run, you can click on the provided link. This is just a fun way for us to stay in touch with some of our participants and volunteers, and help eveyrone feel more connected during their run.
When you are out running, stay safe and give people plenty of room when you’re passing them on the road or trail (a 6-foot space is recommended). I have noticed that people get especially antsy when I’m running towards them, so I give them plenty of space by getting off the trail or moving over on the sidewalk and/or road (just watch for cars). Keep running buddies to 1-2 people, and unless you’re with your partner or someone you live with, it’s best to drive in separate cars and keep a 6-foot space between the two of you.
Just keep running
Running has always helped me through hard times: Moving across the country, my divorce, and now the apocalypse. For me, it has been the very best sport for my sanity and stress relief. Staying active and getting some fresh air is more important than ever during this altered reality we are all facing, and I hope everyone is finding some time to get outside.
“Run when you can, walk if you have to, crawl if you must; just never give up.”
Have more road running tips? Stephanie is the Marketing Coordinator at iDaph Events. Please share your tips with her by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
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