Sometimes a workout buddy does not work out for some reason, so you roll solo for a workout. Solo workouts are a great time to zone out and focus on your exercise goals. But does your safety ever cross your mind? Have you ever thought about any possible scenarios in which working out alone may be risky? Over the past decade, I have seen and heard some unfortunate incidents that could have been prevented if safety was taken into account. I have read about people disappearing on evening jogs, passing out from overexertion, and I have had to assist some individuals with injuries they sustained while working out. In an effort to promote fitness in the best way possible I’ve thought of a few tips to keep you safe while you’re working solo out outdoors.
1. Keep a Cell Phone/ Form of I.D. on you.
Keeping a cell on you will enable you or someone else to contact someone in case of an emergency for yourself or even someone else. An I.D. will, of course, allow you to be identified if need be. People pass out sometimes when working out from pushing it too hard and it would be nice when someone has found you they are able to relay that information to the proper personnel. These items can be kept in a “Go Belt” or running pouch some call it, it is a product which I personally use to hold my belongings as I exercise; it’s an elastic belt with storage to wear your waist. Another option is an old school fanny pack, but don’t worry, they have made more stylish and sporty ones for those who care how it looks and there’s nothing wrong with that.
2. Carry a weapon.
Yes, I said carry weapon or something that could be used as one. You need to be able to defend yourself if need be, there may not be any help around. With that being said, the type of weapon that can be carried depends on your federal, state, and local laws, so be sure to look them up first before purchasing. Consider the following to carry around: pepper spray, mace, knife, tactical pen, stun gun, taser, baton, key chain weapons, or a tactical flashlight. If you don’t feel comfortable, you can always carry a self-defense alarm. And also keep in mind that wildlife can also pose a safety threat. If you’re the hiking type you may want to invest in some wildlife repellent.
3. Carry Medications/First Aid.
If you have an allergy to stinging insects make sure to keep your EpiPen on hand just in case a honey bee isn’t feeling too happy. Don’t’ be afraid of the fanny pack. Carrying a miniature first aid kit may come in useful if you plan on trekking off the beaten path. There are kits that come in all sizes that can be stored in your car, a pouch, or even on you.
4. Be Aware of Your Environment.
Be aware of your surroundings wherever you decide to workout. Consider working out in a public place that allows you privacy and visibility. Let someone else know of your whereabouts just in case of an emergency situation and research the place you plan on working out at. There are websites that show the statistics and rates of crime that have occurred in a particular area. In addition, some parks make known, the amount of incidents/accidents that have occurred in them to emphasize the importance of following park rules, guidelines, and regulations for safety precaution. I suggest well lit, family-friendly, and open spaces when working out alone. All in all, be alert, and if you see something say something.
5. Ask for Help.
If you need help building a fitness plan and/or finding somewhere to workout, ask someone knowledgeable like a personal trainer. Perhaps they know of places from training their clients there or training there themselves. Consider hiring a trainer until you get into the rhythm and feel comfortable working out alone. A good trainer will show you how to safely perform exercises, monitor how your body responds to workouts and is another person that can be aware of your surroundings for safety purposes while training.
I hope that you found these safety tips valuable and that you apply them.
Be Healthy, Be Balanced, Be You