I completed the 5K portion of my Welcome to Summer Virtual Run yesterday and later this week I plan to complete the 10K. I tried to get my husband to run it with me but he just wasn’t up to it so after a 1/2 mile I just took off on my own for the rest of the run. I had actually planned to get up at 5:30 in the morning to run the 5K but after reading Shut Up and Run’s blog about another young runner that was killed recently I pretty much decided for safety reasons it would be better to run later in the day.
Sarah was a 31 year old pregnant mother of 3 beautiful children, she was a wife, a daughter and a sister. She was out for a morning run with her sister when she got ill and decided to head back to her car after telling her sister to go on and finish her run. On the way back she was kidnapped, robbed and murdered. You can read the full story here.
This tragedy makes me sad, angry and scared. Sad for the family who have lost someone precious in their life, angry that I have to worry about running by myself and scared that this could happen again to someone else.
I will not stop running alone because of something like this but I think there are safety precautions we can all take when running alone. Here are my safety tips for you:
- Never run alone in an isolated or secluded area during the early morning or late night hours. I like to run in parks, preserves and on trails but I also feel running in these areas alone could be dangerous.
- Do not wear headphones. I love to run with music as much as the next person but it can be dangerous. Headphones prevent you from hearing your surroundings and someone could easily sneak up on you or you could get hit by a car. Your reaction time will also be impaired because you are distracted by the music so it is best to leave the headphones at home.
- Tell someone where you are going and when to expect you to be back. I always tell my husband the route I am taking and how many miles I plan to run so he has an idea of when I should return and if I don’t he can come looking for me or report me missing to the police.
- Carry a cell phone. This could be a lifesaver in a dangerous situation. I am guilty of leaving mine at home from time to time just because I don’t want to be bothered but I do plan to keep it with me at all times now.
- Carry ID. I always wear my Road ID when I am running alone. If something does happen to you at least you can be identified by your Road ID, especially if your are in an accident or collapse. With Road ID the paramedics or police have the information they need to contact your family and they have any other pertinent information you may want to put on your Road ID like allergies.
When I head out for a run alone Road ID gives both my husband and I some peace of mind that if something happened I could be identified. I also got one for him too so I can have the same peace of mind when he goes out on his own.
This is one purchase you will not regret. Road ID is also sponsoring my Welcome to Summer Virtual Run which is happening this week!! If you participate you can be entered to win a gift certificate to Road ID to purchase one of your own!!!
You can read my previous review of Road ID here.
Disclosure: Road ID provided the gift certificate for the virtual run. I was not compensated in any other way and all opinions are 100% my own.
Just remember safety should always be first no matter how much you want to head outdoors for any type of exercise and that is the biggest reason why I decided to run my 5K after work instead of at 5:30 am. I may not always make that choice but yesterday I just felt like it was the right decision. On the other side of this the rest of the week is supposed be in the high 90’s so I am sure I will be running early in the morning rather than later in the afternoon but I will be following all of my safety rules.
Running yesterday after work may not have been the best decision because the humidity was horrible and by mile 2 my legs felt like lead but in the end overall it was not a bad time:
Tomorrow I am planning on running the 10K and temperatures are expected to head in the 90’s so I may just head to the gym in the am but we will see how I feel.
I hope everyone is enjoying the Welcome to Summer Virtual Run so far, I know I am enjoying all the tweets, pics and recaps!!!!
How do you stay safe when exercising outdoors?