Running from Home
Some Notes on Safety for Westbury Harriers Members
The current Covid-19 epidemic has seen both novel hazards and members training more from home. While we’re sure you always think about safety when going for a run, these notes cover some points you might not have thought of.
This is not, of course, a complete list of what to look out for, at is pitched at running in and around Bristol during normal daylight hours. There are some links to further advice at the end of these notes.
1. Avoiding Other People
1.1 We’re all becoming familiar with that little dance you do to avoid other people by 2m, but please take care that this doesn’t itself cause problems.
1.2 When you see that you may need to change path to keep well away from someone, start to do so well before you reach them (don’t leave it till the last moment). There may be others doing the same thing.
1.3 Look behind you, there may be a bike coming past (or an even faster runner!).
1.4 Please be prepared to stop and stand aside if the path is too narrow (or the ground off the main path is uneven). Runners don’t hold any right of way, and it would be good to think that our members are courteous at all times!
1.5 Once past, get back to the main path slowly and safely.
1.6 Try to avoid touching anything (such as a gate or railing) while out on your run, and also try not to touch your own face. Wash your hands after training as well as before.
2. Road (And Off-Road) Safety
2.1 There seem to be more (silent) bicycles around, often being peddled furiously, so always look behind you before stepping into the road, and be prepared to stop.
2.2 Where possible, use the footpath on the right of the road, so you are facing oncoming traffic if you need to step into the road to avoid someone.
2.3 It is worth wearing bright colours so that car drivers (and furiously peddling cyclists) can clearly see you and avoid you if you do something stupid.
2.4 You’re never too old for the Green Cross Code!
3. Pick Your Routes
3.1 Patterns of use have, and continue to change, so use your recent experience to avoid crowded or dangerous areas, and parks with rampant dogs.
3.2 You might like to vary your route from run to run, but when planning a new route make sure it is well within your ability (if there’s one thing worse than getting lost, it’s getting lost and being 10 miles from home).
3.3 You may want to leave a note of where you’re going, or even give a friend permission to see where you are on a tracker app.
3.4 Please remember that private property is private property, even if the land owner has kindly opened it up for the duration. It is not appropriate to do efforts on golf greens!
3.5 Aim to use wide paths or open spaces for any faster running that you do, so that it is easier to dodge other people.
4. Look After Yourself
4.1 Please remember that it’s not the training that builds you up, it’s your body’s response to training. So do eat proper meals, go to bed at regular times, and don’t overdo your running. Remember if you train too much, or when you are unwell, you won’t get any benefit.
4.2 Do heed the latest government advice and remember that the NHS is still open for business.
4.3 Carry your mobile phone and an ‘In Case of Emergency’ card with you (or use the ICE setting on your phone), just in case the worst happens. Don’t forget to keep properly hydrated and wear clothing appropriate for the weather.
4.4 Please let us know (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you encounter any problems which could affect others, whether a savage dog, unpleasant individual, or unexpected pot-holes, so we can pass on the warnings. Also remember that not all advice on the internet is good advice!
5.1 Only you are in a position to decide how much supervision your child needs.
5.2 Do make sure they are familiar with all points of safety, and never under- estimate your child’s ability to get lost!
5.3 Although running with siblings might be safer in some respects, children can be more easily distracted and take less care when with other children.