Now that the daylight hours are getting so short, many of us will be forced to run in the darkness early in the morning before going to school or work or later in the evening. Not only has the Jessica Ridgeway case got me thinking about safety, I was at a Girls on the Run retreat recently where a presenter, Beth Risdon, spoke about marathon training, including runner safety. This issue was close to her heart because her cousin was abducted and murdered while out on a run close to home last January. You can read more about her cousin Sherry here.
Beth blogs at Shut Up and Run and she recently posted some tips on runner safety.
Attackers generally look for the easiest target: someone distracted, alone, or in a hidden area. Did you know that running with just one friend decreases your chance of being attacked over 50%. Run with two friends and your chance of attack drops to almost zero.
I rarely run headphones anymore. They make me feel too vulnerable. I like to be aware of the world around me and any threats. While I don't always run with friends, I always have my dogs with me. They may look like gentle giants, but I have no doubt they would tear an attacker (be it human or mountain lion) to shreds if they sensed danger.
If someone makes you feel threatened, scream as loud as you can. They might be scared away by the unwanted attention. Even if they are not an attacker, it's better to be safe than sorry and feel a little embarassed by your screaming.
Have you ever thought you could out run an attacker? I know I've considered this strategy. However, this weekend's Zombie Infested 5k has changed my mind. During this race, zombies were hidden along a 5k race course. Runners had flags attached to their bodies that the zombies tried to grab. Once all of their flags were gone, the runner was "dead."
I was wrong. He mainly chose women as his "victims." No matter how speedy the woman looked, he was almost always able to get her. While his intentions were not malicious, it was eye opening to see how easy it could be to get caught by the "bad guy."
I don't mean to preach doom and gloom on my blog. In fact, it's highly unlikely that you will ever be attacked. However, I would be devastated if you, me, someone we know, or ANYONE was that one person who gets attacked.
If you think these tips are worthwhile, please pin or share them. Here's to being safe out there!!!
Feel free to share any other safety tips you might have too.