Exposing the trail with Exposure Lights!

One thing that all early morning or late night exercisers face is the darkness. Before we turn the clocks back in the beginning of November, I was starting and ending my runs before the sun peeked above the horizon. In years past, I hadn't used a head light at all - but I was running on well lit residential streets and didn't really need much additional light. Now, I'm running in Bear Creek park - with no lights at all and plenty of wildlife. Last year, I was using a tiny petzl light - just enough to kinda see where I was going, but not really enough to see anything else. And not being able to see meant I wasn't getting the quality workouts in. It's hard to run fast without knowing where that next step is going to land.  It was clear that I needed something brighter to be able to get the most out of my workouts before I headed to work. Too bad the Exposure Lights we use for night riding wouldn't work for running...

Or would they? Nick had just gotten the smallest light - the Joystick, which only weighs 3.5 oz and gives off a whopping 400 lumens on high. Only problem was I didn't have a headband that would work with the Joystick and I wasn't planning on wearing my cycling helmet running. Now what? Well, from my years of fixing the toes on our booties, I had plenty of elastic. Maybe I could make something myself. It would have to have fit snugly, but not super tight, not allow the light to wiggle at all, be comfortable on my head and have room for either a hat or head band. Oh, and there would need to be room for my ponytail, so a simple headband with a Mohawk design wouldn't work. So out came the elastic, marker and scissors. Time to get creative and see what I could come up with.  And after a few days playing with the elastic and my sewing machine, I had a decent prototype headband.
Might not look pretty, but it gets the job done!
First time I wore the Joystick running, I met a large group of runners going in the opposite direction. I felt bad for nearly blinding them - my light was so much brighter. It was awesome! I could see everything, be confident in my footing and be able to get the quality workouts I needed at the time that I had open to run. Nick liked my headband so much, he decided to take that one. So I came up with another design for the second prototype. A few more dark and pre-dawn runs and the second headband was ready to go for the big test. The Manitou Incline. With winter (supposedly) coming, Nick wanted to be able to do the Incline and he wanted to have the best lights available - both for going up and coming down Barr Trail. The little petzl might work for going up, but not for running down Barr. We had the Exposure Lights and that's want he wanted to use. So last Friday, we made our first trek up the Incline with the Exposure Lights. I had the Joystick and Nick was using one of the Diablos. And the headbands worked great. We could see everything, going up and coming down. I had no worries about missing a railroad tie or tripping on rock on Barr.
Ready for action with the Joystick Headband
Gotta leave some space for the ponytail!
 Mission accomplished - we're going to be rocking the Manitou Incline nearly weekly under the cover of darkness, with the Exposure Lights we use for 24 hour racing lighting the way!


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