Runners, Here Is Your Solar Eclipse FAQ

istockphoto.com

istockphoto.com

As media-savvy citizens, you probably know a lot by now about Monday's total solar eclipse—the first seen in the continental U.S. since 1979. As runners, however, you are probably desperate for answers to some pressing runner-specific questions.

We are here to answer those questions.

Q: How will the eclipse affect my form?
A: For a brief period, it will make it darker than usual.

I have a speed workout scheduled during the eclipse. Should I postpone it?
Yes, just to be safe.

What if I do it on the treadmill?
Oh. Yeah, that should be fine.

Which stretches should I avoid during a solar eclipse?
The same ones you should avoid every other day.

How should I hydrate for the eclipse?
For the best results, we recommend using fluids.

How should I fuel for the eclipse?
Duh:

Moon Pie... What a time to be alive!
You said it.

Can I look directly at the sun?
No.

What if I'm using my Name Brand Running Eyewear™?
You mean sunglasses?

No. These cost $140, so they're called "eyewear."
They're sunglasses, and the answer is no.

I'm really into planking lately, and as a result my core is super strong.
That's terrific, but you still shouldn't look directly at the sun.

Just sake of argument here, but what would happen to my eyes, theoretically, if I did look directly at the sun?
You know what? They're your eyes. Do whatever you want.

Is there a store somewhere called Eclipse Running?
Yes—in Reno, Nevada. It was opened in 1994 by a guy named Chuck Martin, whose photo is on the store's website. Chuck looks like a guy we'd like to have a beer with.

Can I look directly at Chuck?
Yes.

In a CNN.com article, does J. Kelly Beatty, senior editor of Sky & Telescope, compare viewing a total solar eclipse to "being on your wedding night"?
He does.

Uhh... What does J. Kelly Beatty do during these events, exactly?
That is a question for J. Kelly Beatty.

I've heard that during the eclipse the temperature may fall, the wind may go still, and certain animals may behave as if to say, "Hey, what the f*** just happened?" True?
There is no scientific evidence to support the notion that animals swear, even to themselves. Also, these questions are getting less and less runner-specific.

I run with some friends who believe that a solar eclipse is the sun being slowly devoured by the decapitated head of a Hindu demon. What's the best way to address this?
Well, that's what some believe; scientists believe that the complex interplay of astronomical geometry periodically aligns the Sun, Earth, and Moon so that the Moon completely obscures the light of the Sun for a period of time.

As usual, the truth probably lies somewhere in the "murky middle." Mollify your friends with some Moon Pies and gently change the subject.