Samara Donald is: The Gym Coach

Make the most of your workout!

Running outdoors? Use “AAA”

I love outdoor running – it’s not only great for the body but for the mind as well. A great way to see a new city or your own neighborhood, road running can also carry high risk of injury. To stay out of harm’s way, use the “AAA” (triple A) method:


  • Never run when you are tired, sick, or intoxicated. Though this may seem obvious, many fitness buffs try to ignore the messages given from their body. Make sure you’re rested and full of energy before taking to the road.
  • Wear bright and reflective colors so cars can see you more easily.
  • If running with headphones, keep music at a low volume, or an ear bud in one ear only, so you can hear car horns and cyclists


  • Every minute of your run, watch for cars and cyclists. It only takes a split second for one to come at you from nowhere
  • If you’re like me and prefer asphalt (it’s got more resistance and thus is better on your knees), pick residential roads or roads with a bike lane and stay inside them.
  • Run against traffic so you can see cars and they can see you (this is opposite to cycling where you want to go with traffic)
  • Give cars the right of way; If you’re going to cross in front of a car (even if in a crosswalk) make sure you have eye contact with the driver before doing so – give him/her a wave so they know you’re going to make a move.


  • Plan your mileage before you go – if you’re new to running, don’t try to run more than you can on a treadmill. You’d hate to be 2 miles from home and struck with a leg or side cramp!
  • Plan your route before you go – know where you’re going and shortcuts back just in case.

With these simple tips you can stay safe and have an enjoyable activity you can take anywhere!


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This entry was posted on January 9, 2011 by in run.
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