By: Jodi Jordan
The recent abduction and murder of Eliza “Liza” Fletcher has made me sick to my stomach and has me thinking about how we, as women, can run safer.
As a marathon runner, and mom, in Texas, I inevitably run in the wee hours of the morning to escape the heat and also to knock out runs before my kids are up in the morning. I have been followed, tailed by cars, and harassed. While some of this has happened in the early mornings, it has also happened in full daylight, regardless of what I have been wearing or in what neighborhood l have been in. Bottom line… running while a female has its challenges. So here are a few tips that we can use to stay as safe as possible while doing what we love. They shouldn’t be necessary, but they ARE.
- BE AWARE, AND TAKE OUT YOUR HEADPHONES. If you just can’t handle it, only use one, in one ear.
- Hide your start/finish location in Strava or other apps, this function is very easy to enable.
- Plan ahead – know your route. Let others (spouse, family member, or friend) know where you plan on running.
- Don’t run at the same time and same place.
- Buddy up. Find a running friend at a similar pace or join a running group. Ex: Local Groups
- Carry a deterrent like an alarm, light or pepper gel. Ex: Nathan SafeRun Alarm
- Have a plan and be ready to run to a house, gas station, etc. Trust your gut, and don’t be afraid to disturb someone if you feel like something is off.