Feeling Safe on the Run

When I came across this article on the Runner’s World website, I quickly scrolled past it, ignored it and wanted it to go away.  I was heading out for a run and didn’t want to scare myself and feel unsafe.

The next day, after my long run, I read it.  I had to.  This is reality and I can’t ignore it.  It’s so unfair that we, as women runner’s, need to worry about feeling vulnerable and possibly being attacked on the run.  I typically do all my runs through a large subdivision near my house.  I also venture out on a path that is along side a fairly busy road.  All my runs are solo, but I never feel unsafe.  Dogs are more of a concern to me than being attacked by a person.

My mom suggested that I take a self-defense class.  She also read the article and of course is concerned for my safety.  Taking a self-defense class is a great idea which I’m going to look into.  I like to think that if I ever did get attacked, I would fight back with all my strength.  But you never know what you’ll do in a particular situation.

Apparently, this woman was running in a popular park and was attacked in a public restroom. (luckily she was able to defend herself and is ok) These attacks can happen anywhere.  We need to be aware of our surroundings at ALL times.

Years ago I purchased some pepper spray.  Not once did I take it running with me!  It eventually expired and I threw it away.  A lot of good that did.  Here are some tips I found to help keep you safe while running:

  • Run with a buddy or group
  • Always be aware of your surroundings
  • Ditch the headphones
  • Run with pepper spray (know how to use it)
  • Trust your gut
  • Change up your route
  • Be especially careful at night
  • Take a self-defense class

We, as women runner’s, need to be confident and learn how to defend ourselves.  I feel one of the best tips is to always be aware of your surroundings.  If you are zoning out listening to music, you can easily be caught off guard.  Also, altering your route is a good idea.  If someone notices your daily schedule it makes you an easier target.

Overall, I feel that we can run safely and not be intimidated by the stories we read.  After all, runners like to run!  We can’t stay inside and hide.  Don’t be afraid to run alone.  Take a class, be aware, and always trust your gut!

Do you run solo?

Have you ever taken a self-defense class?



2 Responses to Feeling Safe on the Run

  1. I carried my pepper spray with me for over a year before I realized that I was holding it so if I’d actually had to use it I would have sprayed myself in the face. Yep, I was carrying it backwards. Duh!

    • Cyndi says:

      Hi Deb,
      Good thing you never had to use it! I feel that it’s probably easier to just punch and fight back vs trying to figure out how to use a pepper spray