Running solo can be an incredibly therapeutic and rejuvenating way to de-stress and clear your mind after a long day. However, it's important to keep your safety and wellbeing in mind when running on your own, especially if you're doing so late at night, or you're jogging through a particularly deserted area. Of course, this isn't to stop you from going out and doing your thing; all I'm saying is it doesn't hurt to be proactive in gathering a few
safety tips for running alone, so you can maintain peace of mind each and every time you lace up your sneakers and hit the pavement.
Of course, it's
always a good idea to prioritize your safety, but given that we recently set our clocks back for Daylight Saving Time, and the sun now sets at (a very depressing) 4:45 p.m. most days, that means, if you're running at night, you need to be that much more vigilant about your surroundings. And look, I don't mean to freak you out, but there is some evidence to suggest a slight increase in crime rates when we turn the clocks back, as per a 2013 report from NPR.
This doesn't mean you have to be destined for treadmill runs for the rest of eternity, though. There are definitely ways to remain both safe and confident during your solo runs. Here are five safety tips for running alone, from two women who do it all the time.
Save the satisfaction of blasting your favorite playlist through your earbuds for treadmill runs, says
Jenna Epperly, a personal trainer at Jim White Fitness & Nutrition Studios. "Don’t listen to music too loudly so you can be aware of your surroundings," she tells Elite Daily over email.
Of course this doesn't mean you
can't listen to Ariana Grande's "thank u, next" on repeat throughout your run — just consider waiting until you're back home to really crank the volume up.
Tell Your Friends Where You Are
"Always try to let someone know you’re going for a run [or give them] a general idea of where you’ll be running and how long you think you’ll be gone for," Epperly suggests.
This one's easy, fam. Shoot that text and be on your way.
Be Aware Of Your Surroundings
Epperly tells me that she knows this one can be annoying, but for the sake of your safety, try to remember to look around and scan your surroundings when you're running outside, as opposed to staring straight ahead or down at the ground. This way, the personal trainer says, "you'll be able to see what’s going on around you," and that sense of awareness is crucial in keeping yourself safe.
Consider Investing In A Safety Device
Charlie Watson tells Elite Daily that she never leaves for a solo run without a safety device in tow. Of course, there are tons of devices and apps to choose from, but KATANA Safety, a company that aims to use its technology and products to prevent sexual assault and other acts of violence, is the maker of the only personal safety device that attaches to the back of your smartphone, so you never have to worry about remembering to put it on or bring it with you on your run. The KATANA Safety Arc is armed with two types of alerts: an audible alert and a silent alert, both of which will contact a 24/7 KATANA Safety Response Center when triggered, a representative from the company tells Elite Daily over email.
Once an alert is triggered, the representative explains, the 24/7 response center immediately contacts you to see if you need emergency assistance. From there, you can choose to have the response center send help, send your location to KATANA Safety's Circle of Seven, or both. And if you're wondering what the Circle of Seven is, it's a feature in the
KATANA Safety app that allows seven people of your choosing to be contacted by the response center and sent your location in case you need their help. In other words, this device truly has all of the bases covered.
And Some Visible Headgear For Nighttime
According to Watson, when it comes to running outside (especially at night), it's important to keep yourself visible to any cars that might be out on the road. In addition to wearing light colored clothing, it might not be a bad idea to "invest in a quality head torch," says the marathon runner. "Even if you run on lit roads, this will help with your own visibility to cars and cyclists."