As the warmer weather + summer approaches, we love to hit the outdoors for our fav sweat sesh. Running is one of the best workouts because it’s great for both physical + mental wellness. It’s also super easy to rack up miles considering we can get it done anytime, anywhere, + with almost no equipment required! : )
Although everything is better with our CHAARG girls by our side, sometimes a solo run is perfect to clear our heads, listen to our bodies on our own time, ++ peacefully connect with nature. However,, it’s always important to remember general safety! Stay safe while running alone by following these tips —
1] STAY AWARE + LISTEN TO YOURSELF
Even if it seems obvious, don’t totally zone out on your run. Warning signs might not always be so in-your-face obvious — they may come in the form of a little voice in the back of your head or a squeamish feeling in your stomach. That being said, if something doesn’t feel right, act on it! Your intuition can be a lot more accurate than you may think, ++ sometimes listening to your gut is the best way to detect threats. When running solo, it’s super important to stay confident in yourself + what your head may be subliminally telling you.
2] DITCH THE HEADPHONES
As much as we may love to match our pace to the beat ++ let the music move our bodies forwards, headphones can be a huge distraction to the world around us. Other runners, bikers, or cars coming up from behind us require our hearing to be ultra-alert in case we have to move away in short notice. Runners should never, ever assume they’re seen — In fact, it’s best to assume the opposite!
There are other perks of having open ears, too, like being able to focus on the natural sounds around us [which can be super soothing, especially on a trail], center our thoughts, ++ practice active breathing exercises!
3] TELL A FRIEND
Letting a fellow CHAARG girl or roommate know what you’re up to is always a good idea before going out on a solo run. Make sure to give them the deets on where your route is, how long you’ll be out, ++ how to contact you if necessary.
Other great ways to stay safe ++ let your loved ones know where you are can be done right on your cell phone [which, by the way, should always be on you!]. Apps like bSafe give you the ability to share your location in real-time, send an SOS alarm, or invite friends to walk with you when you feel like you may need company.
4] CARRY SELF-DEFENSE IN YOUR POCKET
Any time you’re running alone in a secluded area, carrying some form of self-defense can make you feel protected ++ safe in any given scenario. However, if you’re going to carry a weapon like pepper spray in your pocket while you run, it’s essential to learn how to properly use it first!
5] RUN IN THE RIGHT PLACE
Before you embark on your running route of the day, always make sure that you’re running against traffic. This way, you can keep an eye out on the cars + bikes in the streets coming towards you. Keep your runs limited to the sidewalk, as well, to stay safe ++ out of harm’s way. Lastly, [as always!!] look both ways before you cross!
6] ALTER YOUR ROUTE
Following the same exact route in your daily run makes you particularly vulnerable + easy to be followed. Someone can easily pick up on your running patterns after a while, so it’s important to keep your route unpredictable just in case! If you usually lace up your running shoes on Thursday mornings at 8 AM, change it up to do so on Saturday afternoons once in awhile. If you always follow that one trail ++ hill, try taking a turn at a different sidewalk // path next time.
Changing things up is always helpful to stay excited about fitness, ++ in this case, may grant you some new, pretty scenery, too! ; ) Being unpredictable with your workouts is great for the body, too, because it keeps our muscles guessing + can help us overcome fitness plateaus.
We want you to enjoy every step of your run, but we also want you to stay safe in the process! So keep your head up, stay alert ++ go kill that run! ; )
+ Becca [@becc_inchaarg] // [UMD CHAARG]