Some how-to’s on avoiding becoming a smushed squirrel while you run outside on the roads..

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This post is dedicated to the dozens of oncoming vehicles whose drivers I see texting instead of paying attention to me to the roads. Never mind the cars driving the other way-if they aren’t paying attention to them- they aren’t noticing you, either. Your eyes and ears must be 100% alert, especially during the winter months where the road space can be halved.

We’ve all seen those poor animals run over on the roads. Last week I was almost a smushed squirrel. Ironically, it was not, in fact, on a main road. It was on an unsuspecting back road, two streets over from my house on a quiet side street. The driver was turning right onto the road I was on, and not paying attention to anything besides what was coming up on his left. I stopped, jumped off the road and into the snow, but he (and his giant Ford F350) STILL didn’t see me. If I hadn’t jumped off the road, dude would’ve hit me. He finally realized what he didn’t see(me) and profusely apologized. I was lucky. And this isn’t the first time something too close has happened to me. Although it doesn’t happen often-it is very scary and the memory has a tendency to stay with you forever.

These are some of the golden rules I follow for running on the road.

1. Run against the traffic. (see above) not all drivers are doing their due diligence to uphold the laws of the road. When you’re able to see all things that are barreling their way towards you-you have a chance to leap right out of the way, if necessary.

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2. Never assume they can see you. You have to assume they cannot see you, Always. Eyes up, ears alert. No excuses.

3. When running in the dark, take precautions to ensure your safety. wear reflective clothing. Don’t dress like a robber in all black. Bright, bright, bright, reflective, reflective, reflective. You can only be visible if you are trying to do so. Every major running apparel designer has their own “nighttime” running line. Brooks Nightlife is personally my favorite (no they aren’t paying me but I would gladly let them, you hear that brooks?? Now accepting freebies for blog posts!!)

4. Respect that the cars leaving their driveways might not see you. Stop and let them out first. If they wave you on, give them a return wave.

5. Wait to cross the street until you are sure both sides see you. again, give a nice return wave. I actually once had a lady call me the “c-word” as I crossed the street. Even though I was on a cross walk. Even though both sides saw me… It’s cool. I mean, maybe she didn’t like me?? All I know is I obeyed the rules!

6. When running in the morning, there is a chance that the driver might not see you as well. (see #3) the sun might not have risen yet, windows might be dewey, roads could be foggy. The driver might not be fully alert, yet. be safe out there people.

7. When listening to music, keep it at a level low enough to hear what is going on around you. or don’t run with it at all, depending on the time of day.

8. Bonus tip: 😉 A little unorthodox, but…. when someone is rude to you and yells at you for running on their roads… Give them the finger…. No, no, not the middle one, give them a thumbs up. 👍 I’m teasing, it’s the middle, give them the middle. 😉 (I kid, I kid!)

Please, please be safe out there. Learn your city/towns traffic rules and obey them! We all have to share the roads! 🙂

Anyone have any great rules they follow?

Run Free,Run Strong!

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4 thoughts on “Some how-to’s on avoiding becoming a smushed squirrel while you run outside on the roads..

  1. Love the bonus tip too! 😉

    My only other thought is be careful on curves/hills. Sometimes I would run on the wrong (gasp!) side, because there was a hill and I was afraid a car would come speeding over it and hit me. Before anyone yells at me though, I cross back once I’m over the hill. And I don’t listen to music ever, which I do feel is safer. I’m weird.

    I really just prefer to stick my trail running. Harder to become a squished squirrel. Of course, one time I saw a squished snake, I think he was run over by a cyclist. Once I thought I saw a bear, but it was a cat.

    Maybe the trail isn’t any safer….

    • Ohhh. Myyy goddd, I’m dying!!! This is the best response. I actually once saw a squished turtle and it made me so sad!
      Ima, ALSO, I’m soooo careful on curves!!! There is this one curve in a road I run on where the curve is nearly blocked by a big bush-tree thing. And I am soooo careful around that corner..and SOMETIMES I switch sides!!:) HEY-sometimes I switch sides, so I TOTALLY understand if you run on the other side!!! 😃

  2. LOL, I like the bonus tip. I’d love to give them the middle, but then I’m afraid they would chase me down the bike path and murder me and my body wouldn’t be found for weeks because they’ll dump me in the river. OK, maybe I’ve put too much thought into that….

    • LOL……….AMAZING!!!!!! I would like to give you a (small) confession….I middle Fingy it if I feel wronged!! And I’m still alive and un-river buried!! 🙂

      Aaand…Confession #2. It happens like minimum once a month (the middle finger). 😉 flip it proud, my friend!!!

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