Getting exercise is crucial for anyone who wants to stay healthy and live a healthy lifestyle. Many people enjoy running. Not everyone has access to or the want to run on a treadmill indoors, so many take to outdoor running/jogging for their exercise. The downside to this is that it isn’t always safe for people, especially women, to go out alone for a run, especially at night. Women are more likely than men to be harassed, stalked, or even sexually assaulted or murdered on any given night they go for a run. This is why many are discouraged from doing so. Many will only go if they have someone with them and/or are taking a very public route during broad daylight.
Women’s Running has an article with many statistics regarding women’s safety while running: https://www.womensrunning.com/health/statistics-runner-safety-stay-safer/
Some alarming statistics from the article include
- 34% of women feel afraid exercising outdoors alone
- 37% feel threatened sometimes.
- 60% curtail outdoor activity or limit to only daytime
- 50% feel more anxious when hearing about violent crime in the area
- Over 90% feel at least a little bit safer when outdoors with other people
Women should always be prepared for the worst if they choose to exercise outdoors by themselves, especially if at night. This article provides insight into how they can take steps to be safer when doing so: https://www.verywellfit.com/tips-for-running-alone-2911825
The article states that women should
- Trust their instincts
- Inform others of their route and expected time being gone
- Vary familiar routes
- Carry ID and phone
- Be visible and loud
- Listen to surroundings
- Run with their pet if they have one
- Learn self-defense
While it isn’t fair that women should have to worry so much about being in danger while exercising alone outdoors, they need to know how to be as safe as possible and protect themselves. Knowing the basics of how to stay safe outdoors can help reduce any preexisting fears and make running alone more enjoyable.