>Running 101>Crossing Bridges
How do you guys handle crossing bridges in your runs? I'm currently hemmed in on one side by about a 200 foot long rural bridge, meaning it has no running or bike paths... just road lanes. There's about 1.5 feet of "shoulder" on one side, none on the other, and there's a curve on the other end that means it's hard to see if something is coming.
If that is your only route option, I would suggest using that section as a Fartlek and hammer your way across. That way you will be done sooner...
And you can quote me as saying I was mis-quoted. Groucho Marx
What kind of traffic does the bridge see? Are there times when there is a spike in traffic (people coming home from work, fishermen heading out / heading home, etc...?) Do you run in the daytime or at night?
I run rural roads and much prefer the narrow side roads to the main highway despite the relative lack of shoulders. For one reason the speeds are slower and the traffic is significantly lighter. Hence I have less fear going over the rural bridges than the main highway bridges.
Sometimes on my favorite route I might see only six cars or so, but if I run the same section during the winter in optimum fishing conditions there will be considerable fishing traffic just before dark. Unfortunately, this traffic corresponds to the times after work when I can run in the little remaining daylight. Perhaps you can time your runs that go over the bridge for times with less traffic?
The idea of just hammering your way over the bridge is also a good one. Just stick to the available shoulder so you are where drivers would expect a pedestrian to be. I also suggest making sure you wear visible colors, or a headlamp if it is getting dark.. Most of the locals who use the side roads I run live there so they are used to seeing a crazy runner in weird places.
Run against traffic.
Be well dressed for visibility.
Wait, if needed, for a break or lull in traffic.
Once we rode together in a metal firecracker
Run Like a Mother
Just keep in mine when running in winter weather that bridges often freeze before the roads b/c of the air flow beneath them. So if you hammer it across, just make sure it isn't slick!
Geezer trying for speed
I imagine you've consider this... but you could run the bridge in some conditions (that are safer) and you could drive over the bridge and run on the other side in conditions when it's just not safe. I don't know the makeup of your running area, but sure hope you stay safe. Consider a blinking headlight EVEN during the day... the blinking one is FAR FAR more visible and attention getting than non-blinking and is seen even in daylight. On gray days, I'd definitely consider that in such a place because cars do not expect to see you there so are not watching as carefully. Please do stay safe.
Anyone could see races, etc. on www.markrice.com/running.
I believe in HR training: www.markrice.com/running/heart_rate_training.html
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