A friend of mine moved to San Antonio recently. She says it’s beautiful. It’s full of parks and trails. But since she just moved to the area, she is still in the process of making friends. (Which is impossible the older a person gets! How does one make friends once you are over the age of 30?!) She has no one to exercise with and no place to run. Meaning she does not feel safe yet to run alone outside. So for now, she is running on a treadmill at her gym.
As a runner, this is important. You have to find a route that you feel safe running in. Safe meaning there is plenty of room to run, jog or walk. No cars will hit you, no dogs will chase you and no aliens will abduct you. Some runners wear headphones and listen to music which can drown out the noise and also create a risky situation. So if you are out there trying to get some exercise in the great outdoors and you don’t have a pack of people with you, there are a few things to keep in mind when running or walking alone.
First of all, let someone know that you are running. Text someone. Tell your kids.
Be smart and run on an open terrain that is wide and out in the open. Try to avoid a deep dark forest or anywhere that does not have enough light.
If you are running in unfamiliar territory, skip the headphones. And keep your phone on you.
Listen to your gut. If you see an individual that looks suspicious or gives you a bad feeling, run on the other side of the road or go in a different direction. The other day, I was running and I saw a young guy shouting at himself. I decided I didn’t want to interrupt his argument. I went the other way.
Change up the way you run sometimes. Go at different times or go in different directions, and maybe don’t post your route online. Don’t be so predictable. Everyone does not need to know your every move.
So where is a safe place in Lafayette to exercise? I guess that depends on the individual but here are a few places, that I like to run.
- Around Comeaux High school
- Start off at Kaliste Saloom and run down Camellia through River Ranch and turn around just before Johnston
- Girard Park
- The Youngsville Sports Complex
- Sugar Mill Pond
My co-worker told me he went to Lake Martin and ran around the lake. This sounds like a run that would be better with a group. And also, of course, be aware of the alligators. That park is infested with gators.
Acadiana Park has a fun trail. But again, there are lots of trees, snakes, and places for perpetrators to hide so bring a group and maybe a large stick.
And coming soon, Moncus Park. The old Horse Farm on Johnston Street is currently being transformed into a new city park that promises to have running and walking trails.