Hello, How are you today? I hope your week is off to a good start so far.
I took the day off from all exercise on Monday and sat on my ass while I caught up on some work. It was pretty nice actually but by this morning I was in exercise withdrawal and I had to go running. I ran 6.3 miles around my neighborhood. I am tweaking my training a bit and I’m hoping it’s going to help me with my future races. I actually wanted to run a little longer this morning but I didn’t have time because I had to leave almost an hour later than I normally do, but I’ll tell you why a bit later.
There is something really scary that I need to tell you about first.
Last night I decided to go to Walgreens at around 8:00pm. MacGyver was tired from working all day and didn’t feel like going so I hopped in the car and headed off. About 2 minutes after I left the driveway I spotted several police cars across the road and what looked like a CSI van. I got an eerie feeling instantly but I kept driving.
On the way to Walgreens I knew that something bad had happened. I knew in my mind that it was bad and I don’t know how to explain it. It was gut instinct or something, but I’m telling you, I just knew.
Anyway, I went to Walgreens and then made a quick stop at the Dollar Tree and headed back toward home. I didn’t think about what I had seen just 30 minutes earlier. I have a tendency to do that. I convince myself that I’m over-reacting and not to be a Drama Queen. So, I took another route home and I forgot all about it, I didn’t even mention it to MacGyver….. Until 10 O’clock that evening….
That’s when I logged on to the local news station to check the weather and saw a headline that grabbed my attention: Man turns himself in saying he killed mother
Uh, remember what I saw earlier on my way to Walgreens? Yeah, same address. Literally 2 blocks from my house and an area that is typically very safe, an area that I run in all the time and a house that I run by at least 4 or 5 times a week.
I have always run on that side of the street and in that part of the neighborhood because I assumed it was the safer area. How wrong I was. How horribly wrong. What does that say about my judgment?
This is two times in less than a month that something bad has happened where I often run. About two weeks ago a runner was stabbed in broad daylight on a route I often run near my house in Venice, by a 13-year-old boy! That neighborhood is also considered a very safe and quiet neighborhood.
I thought about this a lot last night and I think what’s really bothering me is the fact that I’ve never been scared. I have never once been alarmed by anything or anyone while out running, (other than the occasional animal) but I do have fears while running in other areas that I’m not familiar with. I think I’ve gotten comfortable in my familiarity both here and in Venice. Even when MacGyver and other family members tell me to be careful and make sure to be safe, I kind of shrug it off. I’ve always thought I couldn’t be any safer. I’m running close to home in areas where I know a lot of the neighbors and they know me.
So, this morning I left after the sun came up, almost an hour later than I normally leave and while I didn’t feel unsafe, I felt safer than I would have if I left when it was still dark outside. I almost always run alone so I’ve decided to adopt some safer tactics and adjust my schedule to accommodate them. It’s not something I planned on doing and may not even be necessary but I just feel better about it.
Because even though the murder may have been an isolated incident and the stabbing near Venice may have been a rogue attack by a disturbed teenager, I don’t feel as confident or carefree as I used to and I’m going to take precautions because I think it’s the smart thing to do and I hope that you’ll take precautions too. Please keep running but be safe.
Do you run alone? What precautions do you take to stay safe? Got any suggestions?