Stay Safe while Running

How to stay safe while running

How to Stay Safe While Running

Exactly one week ago, I tripped and fell.  While I wasn’t in a lot of pain, I did have to stop my run.  I was fortunate that I was only a quarter of a mile from my house.  If I were any further, I would have needed to be picked up to get home safely.  After my fall, I began thinking of ways to stay safer while running.  I even asked Facebook for some tips to stay safe while running. (Thanks for sharing!)

Tip to stay safe while running

So how can you stay safe while running?

If you run alone, run with a phone or a way to contact someone.

Not to blog or update my Twitter, but if something happens, and I need to be reached, or I need to reach out for help.  

For instance, if I were 5 miles away from my house when the incident happened, I would have called someone to pick me up.  If I didn’t have my phone, I would not have been able to do that.  I’m honestly not sure what I would have done.  Having a way to connect with someone is critical for staying safe while running.

As runners, we take a lot of things for granted…including our safety.  To be honest, you can never be too careful to stay safe while running. It doesn’t matter whether you are a female runner or male, there are many safety tips to help you stay safe while running but still enjoy running!

Here are some tips and basic rules to follow to stay safe while running:

  1. Run with identification.  Personally, I like to run with my phone as well as an ID inside my case.  It might seem bulky, but I always want to be sure in case of an emergency, I have something. It can be the reason you remain safe on the run. These days there are plenty of safety apps on your cell phone to keep you safe while running.
  2. Tell someone about how far you plan to go and your basic route.  It might seem silly, but if you were expected to run 2 miles and you are gone for 2 hours….something doesn’t add up. Letting someone know when you are leaving for a run can help you stay safe while running.
  3. Don’t run the same route daily.  You truly never know who is watching you run.  Make sure to run different routes at different times.  This is one of the most critical but often overlooked rules of running.
  4. In running safety, two runners are better than one.  There is safety in numbers, right?

    Run with people. It's fun that way.
    Run with people. It’s fun that way.
  5. Run against traffic: This is a huge one for those living in more rural areas. I’ve run in both the middle of nowhere and the city.  It’s important to run against traffic at all times. You can see who is coming, and it’s easier for drivers to see you. It’s the rules of the road and one detail to help you stay safe while running.
  6. Take a Self Defense Class: It might seem crazy to take a self-defense class to stay safe while running, but you never know when you might need it. There are also devices Tiger Lady that help you stay safe.
  7. Wear Reflective Gear: One of the best ways to stay safe while running is to be seen. Never take for granted that every person “sees you.” This is especially important when running at night or in the early hours.
  8. Be Aware of Your Surroundings: This includes how to listen to music while running. Using headphones like aftershokz and being more aware of your surroundings can only help you stay safe while running.

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Questions for you: How do you stay safe while running? 

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  1. Running with my phone is something I’ve only recently started doing but it’s already helped me out of a couple of trouble spots. I often run at night or early in the morning and always with a headlamp and in bright clothes – I know how hard I often find it to spot runners when I’m driving so want to make it as easy as possible for them to see me 🙂

  2. I always usually run right after work and I feel like there are only but so many routes I can take! Especially with the days being so short now! I may need to work on Rule#3.

  3. I won a Road ID at a race a couple months ago, so I wear it when I go running. I think that you covered pretty much all of the basics. Thanks for addressing the issue, because more people are out running because of the weather being cooler

  4. All good advice! I generally run with my phone, my apt or car key, id, and i try as often as possible to run with a friend. I don’t run with music, so i don’t worry about headphones. If I am running through the mountains by myself for a long run early on the weekends, I also run with a flashlight, pepper spray, and sometimes a little box cutter hahah i don’t know why, but it makes me feel better. I’ve never done anything with it, even cut open boxes hahaha

  5. this is a great and informative post! i am going to send this to my brother who is an runs every single day! I think he has a road I.D but i want him to be safe! thanks for sharing 🙂

  6. Good points… need to stay safe out there. One thing I want to expound upon is RoadID. I have one with the electronic info (so EMTs can get my entire history). Run safe!

  7. Great tips! I also run with pepper spray and if I’m running with music run with only one bud in so I can hear what’s going on around me.

  8. These are great tips. I actually got injured on a run today and had to limp home. 🙁 I’ll keep these in mind next time I run.

      1. I don’t know what it is exactly, but it seems to be a lot better now. Thank you! 🙂

  9. Great tips, Hollie! I always carry my phone and quite frankly would not feel comfortable without it!

    -I also love the Road ID products.
    -And I know I’m in the minority, but I never run with headphones unless I’m on the track.
    -Reflective gear is key for my early morning runs. I’m not one to wear fluorescent colors, but these work great for visibility.
    -Also….just BE AWARE! You are supposed to drive defensively…and I run defensively. I always make eye contact with drivers instead of assuming they see me.

  10. Great tips Hollie. I am starting to run with my phone, but honestly the main reason is not safety, but so I can listen to podcasts. But now I have the best of both worlds….other than its heavy and the strap rubs…but thats worth it 🙂 I do have a road ID, which helps keep me safe….although I usually forget it…damn it tina, get on your game 😉 thanks for the reminders!

    1. Do you ever listen to yourself on podcasts hahaha? I do agree though that podcasts/music makes the time go by faster. I don’t normally listen to things when I’m running in unfamiliar areas though!

  11. Awesome tips! I wish I could say I could add to your list but unfortunately, I know that I need to be safer when I run. You are so right with your suggestions. I rarely bring my phone and I don’t carry ID. I know, I know. SO stupid!!!!

  12. Part of my pre-run ritual includes assembling my “emergency” items in my Spibelt: phone, ID, credit card, insurance card, etc.

  13. I run in the morning with a friend on a well lit path. Great tips here.

  14. Believe it or not after running a Warrior Dash, Tough Mudder, and Urban Mudder these past three summers I actually hate running. Yet, I still do it. Good advice here though as I always have my phone with me if just to listen to my Spotify tunes!

  15. I’m convicted. I do wear brights and I always run against traffic and pay attention…but I almost never carry my phone :/. I probably should! My husband usually knows where I am on my run and he knows about when to expect me back. I don’t carry ID either. Oh boy….I should probably change some things. I totally know these things too, just a matter of doing them

  16. Yes! I always have my phone with me. I am on the lookout for sketchballs at all times. I saw a news report about a few apps that you can download in case you are running or walking alone- it basically tracks you and alerts a friend if you have a problem. And there was one where you hold your finger in the screen and if you remove it for a few seconds it automatically calls 911 for you (maybe you should get that one Lolz 😉)

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