safety first

after last week’s long DARK run and situation one of my friend’s found herself on in her run last week, i thought i would take a minute to talk about safety in general, especially now that the days are getting shorter and the nights are getting longer.

before i will get to my safety tips, i will tell you my friend’s story. she was running along on her normal route, had her ipod on, but kept it low just to be safe. she was running on her normal route which has a lot of big trees around it and she started to hear a cracking sound which continued to get louder. she quickly back pedalled as she realized the crackling sound was coming from above her and just as she got out of the way the tree crashed down right in front of her!! luckily she had been paying attention, had her ipod on low, and was able to get out of the way because i don’t even want to think what would have happened if the tree landed right on top of her. scary!!!

she said these pics didn’t do it justice, but notice the fire truck off to the side

which brings me to a few of my safety tips:

  • when wearing an ipod keep it low so you can still hear what is going on around you. if not just for safety, for courtesy to those bikers and runners that are coming by. also you want to hear if someone is approaching you just incase (you never know) and you want to hear if any trees will be falling on you!
  • always bring your phone!!! i have talked to a few of my friends lately and i was surprised by how many don’t bring their phones. just because you are close to your house doesn’t mean you shouldn’t bring it. i never run without mine (partially because i am convinced the one time i don’t bring it i will need it). but what if you get hurt and you are miles away from home, or if something else happens and you need it. bring it, find a way to carry it, there are many methods… just don’t put it in the little tiny pocket in the nike tempo track shorts – sweating may cause phones to die :)
  • when running the dark either run with a light, run on a lighted street or even better: BOTH! you need to see where you are going and people need to be able to see you, especially if you run on a street with cars.
  • try to wear light colored clothes or reflective gear so you are easier to see.
  • always be on alert, always looking around and pay attention to your surroundings. if you don’t feel safe, don’t run.

what are your safety tips for when you run? i know there are a lot of other suggestions out there and seems to be a big topic lately since its dark! let me know what you do, or do your own safety post so we can all make sure to be safe :)


last night: 4 mile easy run with the girls (2 miles each). i am definitely figuring out the “easy” runs and how i do need to take it easy on these days. they are just as important as the hard ones so gotta make sure to keep it easy!

4.15 miles/38:56/9:23 avg pace

gotta love panting tired dogs :)

happy girls!

then i found my cats spooning and had to include them too :)

happy thursday everyone!

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42 Responses to safety first

  1. the gazelle October 2, 2008 at 9:14 am #

    what kind of a light do you run with? (also, how do you carry your phone?)

    I don’t run in the dark very often, although I might find that happening more this winter (last winter I worked in a place that allowed me to take lunch runs, not so much this year).

  2. Jess October 2, 2008 at 9:17 am #

    i’m wondering what kind of light you run with too

  3. *aron* October 2, 2008 at 9:17 am #

    i haven’t had to run with a light yet… but i have a small flashlight i have been bringing with incase i need it.

    i usually have a water/fuel belt on to carry my phone in. if i am not running far enough to need fluids then i have a waist pack that i put my key and phone in. kind of similar just without the water bottles.

    they also make pouches to clip on to your shorts and/or shoes that can hold a key, id and phone.

  4. lauren October 2, 2008 at 9:25 am #

    I LOVE panting, tired dogs!! Yours are so cute and I love the cats spooning – ha!

  5. Frayed Laces October 2, 2008 at 9:33 am #

    Holy crap that is scary!

  6. Marcy October 2, 2008 at 9:34 am #

    I hear you on the mp3 player and phone bit. I never use mine when it’s dark out. I’m so paranoid about people lurking in bushes :P

  7. J October 2, 2008 at 9:34 am #

    Aww i love the picture of your cats spooning! Your dogs are cute too!

    The safety issue is my main concern when running in the morning as well as with an ipod.

    I have a hard time with the easy runs too but as you said they are very important!

  8. audgepodge October 2, 2008 at 9:40 am #

    I love when pets cuddle! It just makes me smile. Thanks for the safety tips!

  9. the gazelle October 2, 2008 at 9:42 am #

    thanks for the answers! I will have to look into the light. I do have a fuel belt (with removable bottle holders) that I could carry my phone & keys in – which I probably should do. And maybe my ID. I'm not a very safety-conscious runner, apparently.

  10. D10 October 2, 2008 at 9:57 am #

    Doesn’t look like your dogs thought it was an easy run! Nice job taking it easy.

    For safety, I never use my ipod. I carry my phone on long runs, but slack when it comes to the shorter ones. Matt always knows my routes and the amount time time it should take me to complete.

    Running in the dark I have a red flashing light armband. In the dark I only run in my neighborhood. It is relatively quiet, but I still feel like I need to start wearing more stuff to make me stand out more. I sometimes carry flashlights, but I hate holding things.

    Brooks has some good night gear that I may need to invest in.

  11. Cindy October 2, 2008 at 10:04 am #

    spooning cats rock.
    I just bought a cheapo 2nd phone to take running. You’re right, don’t want to get stuck miles away(especially in woods) without one. And I can take pics for the blog -now that’s sick!

  12. Julianne October 2, 2008 at 10:06 am #

    omigosh, that tree story is crazy!!! how scary. it’s a good thing i don’t listen to my ipod when i run. i get way too absorbed into the music to pay attention to my surroundings! ok, from now on, i’ll carry my phone – i usually don’t. my phone isn’t that big but it’s such a hassle to carry! but i will start doing so! those are really great advice!

  13. Vava October 2, 2008 at 10:11 am #

    A timely post indeed, what with the weather getting cold, days getting short, and drivers getting antsy on their way to work or back home. I have started bringing the cell phone on my runs, and get my wife to do the same. D10‘s post of earlier today also touched on this subject, and it got me thinking that I need more reflective clothing. My wife has a great biking jacket from MEC that is light and very reflective, and she’s been saying I should get one for cycling. Now that I think of it she’s been saying that for a long time! She’s so smart.

    Great post. Glad your friend had her wits about her and is ok.

  14. Vava October 2, 2008 at 10:13 am #

    Man, I just got down to your picture of the cats “spooning”. Amazing!!! And I love the total and complete contempt for human life displayed on the face of the one on the right. The one on the left seems a little bit ashamed for having been caught in the act!

  15. tfh October 2, 2008 at 10:16 am #

    I’m glad your friend is okay. That’s scary because who thinks to look out for a falling tree?

    Sweet, happy animals. I love it when dogs smile. And running with dogs is another good safety tip! I just heard a story the other day about how a woman was attacked and was getting beaten up while walking her dog but her dog bit the attackers and drove them away. One thing I do is when I see other people in the dark OR light, whether runners or not, is always to make eye contact and say hello in a confident and assertive way. (Sometimes it’s friendly, but in the dark, it becomes less friendly, more assertive.)

  16. AddictedToEndorphins October 2, 2008 at 10:24 am #

    Good ideas for lights are headlamps. They’re cheap and light. You can get them at your running store or at the hardware store…some are lighter than others.

    I always run with my phone, a bus ticket, 50cents incase my phone dies or something, 20$ cash and a credit card. it fits right into my arm band.

    I also like to make sure that my parents know where I am, and an estimated time of arrival home. That way if I don’t come home, they know where to look!

  17. The Happy Runner October 2, 2008 at 10:33 am #

    Yikes! Thanks for the tips.

    LOVE the cat photo!

  18. BeachRunner October 2, 2008 at 10:42 am #

    Good tips (and pics). Glad your friend was ok.

    Nice job taking it easy too.

  19. Nitmos October 2, 2008 at 11:03 am #

    Sidewalks and daylight. I try to include both in my runs as much as possible.

  20. leslie October 2, 2008 at 11:06 am #

    Great tips. I just got two Spok bike lights that I can attach to my pony tail (no joke, they’re that small and that bright) when I run at night. I think they were 2 for $20 at REI a couple of weeks ago.

  21. Marathon Maritza October 2, 2008 at 12:01 pm #

    I’m pretty bad about blasting my iPod, but I don’t run on streets, just a paved walking path.

    I always carry my phone, pepper spray, some cash and ID. On dark, early morning runs, I run with a flashlight (need a headlamp, it’s getting annoying to carry.)

    Timely post since we are quickly losing daylight! Thanks for the reminder!

    And your cats spooning is PRECIOUS!

  22. joyRuN October 2, 2008 at 12:41 pm #

    Kitties spooning – too cute!

    My new smaller phone does fit it into my hydration belt. I do need reflective gear now that it’s so dark in the morning. D10′s post today on blinkers was helpful.

  23. RoadBunner October 2, 2008 at 12:42 pm #

    Run against traffic, not with it.

    I LOVE the cat photo!

  24. Viv October 2, 2008 at 12:43 pm #

    Oh my how scary for your friend. I run in wooded aread too. Thanks for the tips. I never bring my phone on runs usually just rides. I will start from now on.

    I loved the pic of your spooning cats, how cute!

  25. Girl on Top October 2, 2008 at 2:35 pm #

    Glad that she was able to move in time. Thanks for the reminder!

  26. teacherwoman October 2, 2008 at 3:38 pm #

    Wow! That’s scary. Thanks for the tips! :)

  27. N.D. October 2, 2008 at 3:55 pm #

    Holy crap! that is really scary!! thanks for the tips!!

  28. Marci October 2, 2008 at 3:59 pm #

    Love the cat spooning picture! Priceless. Thanks for the safety tips! I am heading out for a 12K run in the dark now, much to Hubs dismay.

  29. Sarah October 2, 2008 at 5:20 pm #

    Those are great tips! I need to remember to bring my phone!

  30. Nat October 2, 2008 at 6:37 pm #

    Good tips.

    The Man and The Boy were walking home and this tree fell 10 feet in front of them. No warning. Nothing. Scary to think about eh?

  31. The Laminator October 2, 2008 at 7:18 pm #

    Good advice.

    I’d add to always bring a RoadID or some sort of identification that has an emergency number and important medical information (if you have any chronic problems or are on any meds) They are a great help if heaven forbid something should happen in the middle of the road.

  32. Holly October 2, 2008 at 7:28 pm #

    awwwwww kitties! so cute. i love that you run half with each dog. :)

    and great safety tips.

  33. Running Knitter October 2, 2008 at 7:48 pm #

    Excellent safety tips! I never wear an ipod – it always messes with my breathing. I too also always carry my phone and I need to start carrying ID or get one of those RoadId’s.

    What pack do you use to carry stuff on your shorter runs? I’m looking for one for the half marathon, since my shorts don’t have any pockets, and I don’t think I’ll take my fuel belt with me. Decisions – decisions!

  34. Laurel October 2, 2008 at 8:23 pm #

    Awesome tips! I need to take my phone. I just HATE carrying things and wearing belts so much. I know, it’s bad.

    By the way, your pets are ADORABLE!!!

  35. ncrunner12 October 3, 2008 at 4:11 am #

    Great tips, I guess it’s just something we all know we should do but never really pay all that much attention to. It’s great to run with a friend if you can, that way if something happens you’ve always got someone next to you.

    Love the panting dogs, there’s no better site then a dog that’s worn out.

  36. Meg October 3, 2008 at 8:00 am #

    Wow, that is a crazy story! I’ve just started being paranoid about running safely. I’ve just about stopped taking my ipod, especially in the dark. Generally I avoid running in the dark in the evenings (vs the mornings), there’s something that seems scarier about the evenings.

  37. Lily on the Road October 3, 2008 at 8:30 am #

    Wow, your friend is very lucky…thanks for all of the safety tips!

    I LOVE your pet pictures…I just love them!

  38. KK October 3, 2008 at 4:28 pm #

    Great tips!

  39. Nicole October 5, 2008 at 7:18 pm #

    your animals are SO CUTE!

  40. Laura October 11, 2008 at 12:16 pm #

    My friend Josh had the SAME thing with a tree branch falling happen to him while running. He never runs with an iPod, but it fell so quickly that he was very lucky to be able to sprint out of the way. Running in NYC, I’m more likely to have a cigarette butt or an air conditioner fall on my head! Still would be pretty bad.


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