If you often go for a walk or run alone, you’re right be concerned about your safety. There are a variety of way to avoid attacks assaults and muggings while walking or running. Some simple solutions include walking with a partner or buddy, and choosing your path carefully. Here are some questions to ask yourself if you’re trying to avoid attack:
- What are Attackers Looking For?
Attackers often choose their targets carefully. Most attackers are looking for an easy target. If you appear alert, confident, and aware of your surroundings, you will decrease your appeal as a target. Attackers may have a variety of motivations – including money, valuables, excitement or abuse. If you are running or walking you may not be carrying many valuables, but potential attackers may have more sinister motives. The best way to protect yourself against violence or abuse is to look calm and confident.
- Where should you Walk or Run?
If you are walking or running for exercise, choose an area that is well lit and relatively public. Most potential attackers hide in areas that are secluded and hidden from view. If your daily commute requires walking, consider asking a coworker or security guard to walk with you. You can also choose your route to avoid any particularly secluded areas. Use your common sense. Walking down a back-alley in the middle of the night is not a wise decision.
- Are You Ready?
There are a variety of things that you can do to prepare yourself for the worst case scenario. Pepper spray, personal alarms, whistles, and stun guns are all options for personal safety. Always learn how to use the self defense device you’ve chosen, so that you can use it easily in a time of need. Don’t leave these items in your car, your home, or your desk drawer when you’re out walking or running alone.
- Will you trust your gut?
There are a lot of cues that our conscious selves don’t necessarily acknowledge – primarily those hints that warn us that danger is approaching. If you get a sudden uneasy feeling, go with your gut instinct. Chances are good that your subconscious is picking up on some clue that there is a predator nearby. Don’t try and rationalize your fear of certain paths, alleys or individuals. If you act on your gut feeling and you’re wrong then you haven’t lost out on anything. If you don’t act on your gut in a dangerous situation you can put yourself at risk.
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