Spring is the time when we think about getting in shape, donning the sneaker, and hitting the great outdoors.
As warmer weather comes, more and more people are hitting the roadways and streets to go for walks or runs. Not only do drivers need to pay attention to other vehicles, now they have pedestrians, joggers and walkers to watch out for also.
If you are going to be walking or running on the streets or roads, please remember that you also must follow safety rules as do the drivers.
1) Avoid running or walking on the streets. You will be safer to try to get your exercise on a walking/bike trail, beach, or sidewalk. The scenery along our local bike trails are beautiful and much more interesting than cars and trucks zooming by anyway.
2) Face the Traffic. If you are on a street or roadway, remember to be on the side facing traffic and as far off the side of the road as possible.
3) Slow down or stop at intersections. Look both directions before entering an intersection, especially if you have the stop sign. Don’t challenge cars to a race. If you and a car are both approaching an intersection, stop and let the car go first. (News flash: They’re faster than you.)
4) Never run/walk between or from behind a parked vehicle. Yours and the driver’s view are blocked by the vehicle. Stop. Look both ways. Then cross.
5) Leave the music at home: That way you will be alert to any potential dangers, be it a dog, an approaching car, or the sound of other people around you. You may not be able to hear possible dangers with your ear buds in. Plus your attention will be on the music and not your surroundings.
A couple of more safety tips from Running for Dummies
6) If you run at night, make yourself visible. Wear light-colored clothing and invest a few dollars in a reflective vest, which you can purchase at a local running store or through a mail-order running catalog.
7) Beware of stopped cars waiting to make a right turn. Stop and wait until they make the turn, or run behind them.
8) Run with others. This may be the easiest way to avoid problems altogether. Sharing the road with other runners is also a great way to stay motivated and to enjoy the sport.
9) Always trust your intuition. If you’re unsure about a person or a place, avoid it.
10) Carry a noisemaker or get training in self-defense and the use of pepper spray. And always call police if something happens to you or someone else or if you see something or someone suspicious.
Many of my good friends are runners and walkers. It is great exercise and a great way to enjoy the outdoors.
Be aware, protect yourself, and follow the rules! You are probably running or walking to have better health….keep it that way!
~Cheryl Pastor, Social Media Specialist