Without reversing the feats of women over decades of history or dismissing the milestones of feminism, the truth is, women still have a long way to go and it’s very important for us to continue an open dialogue about personal safety. It’s easy to become comfortable in our everyday activities like going out for a run. Reviewing some basic safety measures can help to prevent putting yourself in danger. Run smarter and safer with these precautionary tips from Inspired Endurance.
Know Your Running Trail
No woman ever wants to think about the possibility of an attack but it’s something you have to consider. Every woman knows what it feels like to be harassed or catcalled, and running outdoors makes us all the more vulnerable to the possibility.
Most of the time, harassment from men is mild and we know when and how to ignore it or just the right thing to say. However, if you’re out running alone in a rather empty area, an uncomfortable encounter can be intimidating. It’s a prime opportunity for someone seeking to attack. Stick to running busier trails or have a backup plan. Knowing what escape route you could take could save you from an unwanted or dangerous situation.
Be Extra Cautious
Avoid public restrooms in large, empty parks or along desolate trails where you might end up finding yourself trapped if someone chose to follow you in. If you see anyone that triggers your suspicions, change your course of direction. You can still give them the benefit of a doubt without taking the risk of coming near them. Politeness aside, sometimes it’s best to follow your intuition. If you ever have a gut feeling about someone or some place, go with that feeling. Don’t risk it.
Keep Your Friends or Family Posted
If you run with your phone, have it ready to make a quick call to a close contact. Let someone know that you’re going out for a jog. Having someone know where you are is the easiest preventative measure you can take.
Carry a Key Chain Pepper Spray
It may be in your best interest to carry either pepper spray or a loud siren in case of emergency. Be sure to always fully read and understand how to safely use pepper spray. It can be as harmful to yourself if not used properly.
Forego The Beats
Listening to music while running is great. However, try tuning into your breath or the unique sounds around you instead while you’re running alone outside. If you’re running at night, impairing your hearing can be especially dangerous when your vision is already hindered.
Chances are you’ll be fine, but better safe than sorry. In any of these circumstances it’s good to be prepared and always have a plan of defense. We can armor ourselves against potential harm by simply staying aware and knowing how to apply our best line of defense, just in case.