A Third Of Women Harassed While Running.

 

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A disturbing one in three woman have been harassed when running alone, according to the results of a new survey by England Athletics released this week.

It includes being shouted at, drivers honking their horns and even men running alongside them. Perhaps unsurprisingly, just under half of the 2,000 women surveyed expressed fears for their personal safety while running alone.

I’ve been running (ok, plodding) for a few years, on and off, and I’ve certainly experienced being shouted at and also beeped at. It might sound harmless but it can be really intimidating, especially when its dark, which is usually the only time I’m free to run.

It has made me think twice about going out on my own – and that makes me really angry. Why shouldn’t I be allowed to run where and when I want? How dare they think it’s ok to harass people. Even when it only happens occasionally I’m often still on high alert, which doesn’t make for a very pleasant run.

Alongside the survey a new campaign aimed at getting more people in England running by pairing them with their local clubs “providing a reliable, safe and friendly environment” was launched.

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The RunTogether initiative works on the basis that “running with others provides motivation, guidance and support, as well as making it more fun”. Having run both on my own and with a buddy, I wholeheartedly agree with each of their points.

The C25K was much easier when we could spur one another on/moan about each week. Even now, when we consistently run 5K-ish, the fact that I don’t want to let her down means I carry on when I know, if I was on my own, I would stop and walk (I’m really not a natural runner).

The new website makes it easy to find clubs in your area for different levels (it also has running routes available).

I’m not really a club person and while I’m happy to run with my friend, group running really isn’t my cup of tea.

When I first heard about RunTogether, without really reading the details, I thought it was like a dating app for runners. I think it would take someone pretty unique to answer my ad but I’ve already met my soulmate (luckily long before she realised what she was in for).

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I’m very lucky to have found someone who is understanding of my commitments (and the occasional need to cancel at the last minute if Freya is ill) but who also tolerates me stopping to take photos every now and then without even a hint of annoyance (the fact that she will star jump on demand is an added bonus).

Of course, not everyone is lucky enough to have a buddy like mine – and even when we run together we have been beeped at – which is why I think this new resource is going to be helpful – especially in the absence of any solution to stamp out such ridiculous, intimidating behaviour.

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Look how high she can jump!
Have you ever been harassed while out exercising? Would you join a club to feel safer? If you were writing an advert for an exercise buddy what requirements would you have?

PS If you like this post please consider voting for me in the Nepaliaustralian Blog Awards by clicking here and entering “Best Personal Blog – 1” in the comments. Thank you.

 

 

Nepaliaustralian Blog Award Nomination.

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Forget the Golden Globes, the BAFTAs and even the Oscars, it’s all about the annual Nepaliaustralian Blog Awards – or at least it is for me.

Someone has very kindly nominated me in the Best Personal Blog 2016 category. Thank you very much. It made my day yesterday when I found out. I had to click on the link twice to check it really was my site.

I’ve been lucky enough to be nominated for a couple of blogging awards before, which I am always thankful for, but I’ve never really pushed forward with them because they often seem more about how many followers you have than blogging. Do I sound bitter? I don’t mean to, honest. I’m a little fish in a big pond and I’m more than happy to swim about in my small corner.

The Napaliaustralian Awards strike me as different, though. They are run by a blogging mum, who was born in Nepal, which is top of my list of places to visit, who lives in Australia with her husband and daughter.

As she explains:

Every year many blogs are created to express thoughts and emotions. Some are really interesting while others are funny. While some choose to share about their life or relationship others share their skills and passion like cooking, photography or fashion. No matter what field the blog belongs to, if it is good, it needs to be recognized and more and more people should be able to reach these blogs.

There’s no big ceremony (I might buy a posh dress anyway), no trophy to take home, just recognition that you are doing something others enjoy. It’s a grassroots blogging award – and that really appeals to me.

So, if you like reading my blog please could you click here and cast your vote for me by pasting this into the comment box.

Best Personal Blog 2016 – 1.

You’ll need to supply an email address. Your vote won’t be shown in the comments.

While you’re there why not check out some of the other nominated blogs. The lovely, always supportive, Amanda who blogs at Something To Ponder About (home of the Monday Mystery Photo) is nominated in TWO categories, including best personal blog, and Jane at Sustayable Me, who kindly featured me in her Mum Friday Section, is up for Best New Blog.

Thanks again for every view, like and especially comment.

Three Small Gestures Brighten Our Day.

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After writing last week about ONE rude shop assistant, on Saturday we had THREE people who went above and beyond customer service wise.

“What are we going to do today?” Freya asked as soon as she woke up.

“I don’t think we have any plans. Is there anything you would like to do?” I asked her.

“My greatest wish,” she actually said those words. “Is to go and see nan and grandad.”

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Well, if it was her greatest wish I could hardly say no. Barely an hour later we were at Norwich Train Station. After buying my train ticket, I had a quick chat with the two people serving, one of whom also had a daughter called Freya. Just as we were leaving, the lady who sold me my ticket said: “Would she like a sticker?”

Freya’s eyes lit up.

She was so proud of her “We went on the train!” sticker.

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The train left on time and made its first stop 15 minutes later at Diss. Freya became fascinated with the guard and his whistle. Apparently whistling is an essential lifeskill when you’re three and she’s devastated she can’t do it yet. I keep telling her to try every day and one day it will just happen but, thanks to the guard, she’s discovered there is another way (great!).

“How is he doing that?” She said, amazed.

“He has a whistle in his mouth. It’s an instrument, like the recorder you have at nan and grandad’s, and when you blow it, it whistles.”

Her eyes were huge at this new wonder.

Just as we were pulling away he noticed her looking at him and gave her a beaming smile. She responded by waving and he waved us off, which she loved (she kept waving long after we’d left the station).

We pulled into Ipswich a couple of minutes early and went to catch the first of two buses. As I haven’t lived there for a long time I got a bit confused and got on the wrong one. Luckily the lovely bus driver was incredibly helpful. Not only did he tell me what number I needed to catch next but also made sure I knew exactly where to go to get it.

These are all small gestures. Probably the people involved didn’t even think about us again but it really added a little extra shine to our day.

While none of them are very interesting snippets, I thought as I had recorded one man’s negative behaviour here on the blog, I should also capture the three positives too.

Has something small brightened your day lately?