Runners usually look so focused. Add in the fact that they’re moving fast enough that catching them would require elevating your heart rate, and is mugging them even worth it? The statistics argue that yes, it is. Here are some reasons that runners make good targets and how you can minimize that risk.
First of all, many runners listen to music while on their routes. Running, especially distance running, can be a solitary, extended endeavor, and music lets you sink into a rhythm. But music also blocks out the world, which can leave you unaware of potential threats until they are already upon you. Consider leaving the music at home, listening to music low enough that you can hear your surroundings, or buying headphones especially made to allow in outside noise.
Secondly, most runners are prime targets because they are alone. No matter how fast you are, someone bigger can overpower you. Consider finding a running buddy through your social circle or even running groups. If this isn’t possible, try to find an area that has a lot of foot traffic, and if you are suspicious of someone, stay near others.
Third, many runners make the location of their valuables obvious. Whether it’s a phone in an armband or a pouch around your waist, muggers can immediately zero in on the area they need to target, so they waste no time fumbling. Either leave your valuables at home, or hide them in a non-obvious location, such as a single house key in flat waistband pocket.
As runners become more aware of safety risks, more and more are investing in small defense items, such as Self Secure’s line of discreet pepper spray. Next time you go for a run, know you’re not alone.