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  1. #1
    On Your Right ZackJones's Avatar
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    Running Question

    Ok, so I'm out running today and my two coworkers that I'm going to be doing triathlons with drive by and tell me that I should be running on the other side of the road against traffic. They say you ride with traffice and run against it. I say ride and run with it.

    Assuming there's no sidewalk, path, etc to run on and you're running on the road do you run with or against traffic?

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    run against, you never know what people are doing behind you... like getting ready to throw stuff at you(had it happen).

  3. #3
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    Ride with, run against.
    Cyclists of the world, unite! You have nothing to lube but your chains!

  4. #4
    On Your Right ZackJones's Avatar
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    Thanks for the replies. I did some searching after posting the question and it seems several sites recommend the "ride with, run against" philosophy. I guess I'll cross the street at the start of my next run.

  5. #5
    MHR
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    Yes, as posted running against traffic is safer.

    However, I wanted to point out an imporant factor that you may want to consider. The Crown on the road (high spot) is in the middle and slopes to the sides (and even more so near the edges) - some roads more so than others. If you are running on the same side all the time, then one leg is striding out against a shorter distance than the other. So it would be wise to mix it up when and where possible. On my daily run loop of 9-miles part of the loop is against traffic - the other is with traffic. The areas that I tend to run "with traffic" is more safe because of a number of factors: wider sholder, less traffic - or a designated bike path along that side. Running with traffic also teaches you to use your hearing more effectively. After nearly 30 years of running, I have come to depend on listening to traffic coming up from behind and it hasn't failed me yet.

    I wanted to make a point of this issue because I had an injury because of it - which ended up as problems with my hips - which had a been strained/micro tears or in general damage to the soft muscle tissue in that area. It was specifically caused by one leg traveling a shorter distance than the other due to the crown of the road. This gets worse when you do a ton of hill training like I do. This occured over a period of a little more than a year (running at lunch where I worked) so it's not something shows up right away either - it's acculmitive. There must have been about 25 runners who did lunch time runs where I worked and several of them had similar complaints. Due to the location of our employeer (1-mile up a pretty big hill in the foothills west of Denver), all of our runs started running down the 1-mile hill and up a canyon which also had a pretty good grade. So adding the hills to running on the same side of the crown resulted in injuries to several others as well.

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    MHR speaks wisdom. I GENERALLY run against traffic. But if the road crown is bothering me I will cross over when safe.

    ALSO!! Don't run against traffic as you approach the crest of steep/blind hills. Traffic will be on you before they see you. If you are on the other side going with traffic, the autos see you clearly as you approach the crest.

    Warning, the sound of cars coming up behind you doesn't always carry well on windy days.

    Tyson

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    Quote Originally Posted by TysonB
    MHR speaks wisdom. I GENERALLY run against traffic. But if the road crown is bothering me I will cross over when safe.

    ALSO!! Don't run against traffic as you approach the crest of steep/blind hills. Traffic will be on you before they see you. If you are on the other side going with traffic, the autos see you clearly as you approach the crest.

    Warning, the sound of cars coming up behind you doesn't always carry well on windy days.

    Tyson


    I also went with this method until while coming up on a hill crest in a curve I switched over to run with traffic and got hit by a guy in a van. I always run against traffic now, I figure I can dive out of the way if needed. I want to see them coming even if its only for a brief second in a curve or hill. As far as the riding, as much as I hate to I ride with traffic.

  8. #8
    Triathlete John W's Avatar
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    Run against ... you want to see what's coming at 'ya. You might even be able to jump out of the way.

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    run against.

    even if there is a sidewalk, I'm still on the road. Basically I choose the softest option on the feet and knees. Sidewalk being the last resort. Asphalt isn't as harsh as concrete, especially if you're logging lots of miles.

    trails #1 though
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  10. #10
    Packfodding 3 caloso's Avatar
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    Tribro's got it right. Asphalt is much easier on the joints than cement. If I run 10 miles on cement, the next morning it feels like someone took a bat to my knees and ankles. And if you run in older neighborhoods, the sidewalk is likely to be uneven with tree roots and driveway cutouts.
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  11. #11
    On Your Right ZackJones's Avatar
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    All, thanks again for all of the replies and advice. I went to a yoga class at the gym tonight and right across the street is a lighted 1/4 mile track. I'll be taking advantage of being able to run on that nice smooth surface.

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    Senior Member Da Godfather's Avatar
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    well for me it is run on the right on the side walk or in the bike lane... my 5 and 8 mile loop turns are right so i dont cross the road if i dont have to.. also i run with 10-15 guys so i go were i fit.. lol

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    even though asphalt is easier, run on the sidewalk...cars cannot run up on the sidewalk, but sometimes don't mind cutting it a bit close..

    ride on the road with traffic...if you HAVE to run on the road, run against, but it is much safer to stay on the sidewalk
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  14. #14
    Permanent Amateur Mark B10Cycle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MHR
    Yes, as posted running against traffic is safer.

    However, I wanted to point out an imporant factor that you may want to consider. The Crown on the road (high spot) is in the middle and slopes to the sides (and even more so near the edges) - some roads more so than others. If you are running on the same side all the time, then one leg is striding out against a shorter distance than the other. So it would be wise to mix it up when and where possible. On my daily run loop of 9-miles part of the loop is against traffic - the other is with traffic. The areas that I tend to run "with traffic" is more safe because of a number of factors: wider sholder, less traffic - or a designated bike path along that side. Running with traffic also teaches you to use your hearing more effectively. After nearly 30 years of running, I have come to depend on listening to traffic coming up from behind and it hasn't failed me yet.

    I wanted to make a point of this issue because I had an injury because of it - which ended up as problems with my hips - which had a been strained/micro tears or in general damage to the soft muscle tissue in that area. It was specifically caused by one leg traveling a shorter distance than the other due to the crown of the road. This gets worse when you do a ton of hill training like I do. This occured over a period of a little more than a year (running at lunch where I worked) so it's not something shows up right away either - it's acculmitive. There must have been about 25 runners who did lunch time runs where I worked and several of them had similar complaints. Due to the location of our employeer (1-mile up a pretty big hill in the foothills west of Denver), all of our runs started running down the 1-mile hill and up a canyon which also had a pretty good grade. So adding the hills to running on the same side of the crown resulted in injuries to several others as well.
    Yeah, watch out for the terrain you run on, be it road or otherwise. I totally screwed up my knee during cross country season last fall because my team's course seems to mostly slant to one side. I missed about a month of the season b/c of the damage to my knee. Just be aware.
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    Hi - You should always run against traffic... this way you see what is coming towards you... (gives you more time to jump out of the way... )(

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