Tag Archives: running on roads

On Highbeams

20 Dec

So I’m back… to complain again. About drivers. Ohhh that’s right, again. I’ll be honest, I’ve got a little bit of hypocritical road rage; I really hate pedestrians (and slow drivers in the left lane) when I’m driving, and I really, truly hate cars when I’m running on the roads.

Actual photo: Me at the wheel.

I spend roughly half my training time on roads. I run on the road for two reasons: either it’s too dark to hit the trails (because whenever I run through the woods at night I become 100% certain that the Jabberwock is chasing me) or because my run is too long for the trails near my house. So pretty much, whenever I’m running on the road, it’s dark, especially this time of year. So I’ve made a lot of observations and built up a lot of anger. And running’s supposed to be therapeutic. Huh.

I’ve previously complained about drivers who don’t give a girl some space, but today I’d like to address a more universal problem: high-beams.

“Oh, high beams? That’s silly, I’m a very considerate driver, I always turn off my high beams when I see approaching cars.” This is what you’re thinking to yourself, I know. And this is why I hate cars.

What you never do (this I know for a fact due to vast life experience and all-knowing tendencies) is turn down your headlights for pedestrians. I wish to do my fellow road runners a favour and make a public service announcement that will reach approximately 23 people:

Runners and other pedestrians are roughly at the same eye level as those drivers you oh-so-considerately turn down your lights for. This means that we are equally blinded by your lights. Only we have a lot more to lose in a head-on collision with you. Namely our lives.

Not sure if jerkface approaches or I'm dead and Jesus is calling me home.

I realize when you drive past me in the morning that you’re in a rush, on your way to work or to drop the kids off at school or whatever. I totally understand. But my compassion ends when I trip into a ditch because my retinas are being flooded with your stupid headlights and I can’t see where the road ends and soggy hatred begins. This luckily happened to me during the early weeks of fall so I didn’t end up man-slaughtering anyone. However, I don’t think I can legally be held accountable for my actions if my face ends up being what breaks the ditch ice on a winter run.

So please, respect the people you’re sharing the road with. Because one day you may drive past me with your high-beams on and I may just snap. Nothing makes a girl believe she can run faster than a car like blind rage.

So that’s my newest pessimistic observation. This is all starting to make me sound pretty down on running but I really do enjoy myself 99.99% of the time. But no one wants to hear me wax poetic on how nice the winter sun is when it breaks over the tree-tops or how clear the air is in the early morning or how I saw a squirrel give another squirrel a nut and it was really cute. Good news is boring news. So enjoy my venting! Hopefully you guys have a better go of it on the roads.

Neither a glass half-full or empty kind of gal. Just wondering who drank my water.

So You See a Road Runner

25 Nov

So I realize that joggers/runners are generally hated by the rest of the population. I can understand this. We’re up in your face with our fitness and sometimes our junk. Sometimes we have fit dogs that run next to us and look like maybe they think darting onto the road would be awesome. You have to slow down/ swerve to avoid us and who wants to do that, am I right?

What a douche. Hit him.

 

To quote a couple people:

“I don’t think jogging is healthy, especially morning jogging. If morning joggers knew how tempting they looked to morning motorists, they would stay home and do sit-ups.” – Rita Rudner

“It’s unnatural for people to run around the city streets unless they are thieves or victims. It makes people nervous to see someone running. I know that when I see someone running on my street, my instincts tell me to let the dog go after him.” – Mike Royko

 

So some people don’t like runners. That’s okay. I don’t like people who like Twilight. That’s just me.

But guys, that doesn’t mean I will run you down in my car if I see you reading Twilight.

I will, however, mock you mercilessly.

 

Okay? Is that alright with everyone? Do I sound like a normal person when I say that?

If not running people over because I don’t like what they’re doing is normal, there seem to be a lot of abnormal people out there.

So I almost got run over yesterday. Maybe you got that already. It wasn’t dark out, I was running against traffic so I knew the car was coming and they knew I was there.  There were no other cars coming the other way so swerving was an option. But instead this dude/dudette thought nearly clipping me in the shoulder with their side-mirror seemed like a better option. The mirror was literally so close to my arm I think I might have a wind burn.

You guys, I almost died. Before The Hobbit came out. It was a near-tragedy.

"No! We can't let this happen! To the wagon!"

Funny thing is, I didn’t really think about it until after my run. I just kept trucking. But I was sitting at home, knocking back a protein shake, when it occurred to me that I was nearly slaughtered by someone who either hates runners, hates me in particular, or is just straight-up a terrible, terrible driver.

So I thought it was my duty (as in, hopefully I’ll educate the masses so no one murders me) to give some tips on encountering runners in your car. So here goes:

  1. Just give them some space

THAT IS THE ONLY TIP. It should be common sense. Do not see how close you can get without killing them. That’s a horrible idea. If you can’t swerve around them for whatever reason, just slow down a smidgen.

Admittedly, there are some runners out there with bad road sense. I try to get off the road as far as possible when I see a car coming, to be considerate to the driver and to, you know, increase my chances of not dying. I run against traffic, unless I’m rounding a blind curve, when I go to the side with the best visibility. I wear lights and reflective gear at twilight and night. I listen to my music low enough to hear cars coming from a ways away. That is our responsibility as runners.

But some morons flail about in the middle of the road. I understand wanting to hit them. Probably they deserve it. Just don’t.

Finally, there is a bit of a note I wanted to add. Don’t slow down too much. It creeps me out. I don’t care if you’re being considerate, it makes me feel like you’re going to stop to offer me free candy to get into your windowless van. Moderate pace reduction is the key.

Who needs parents when there's a Hannah Montana-mobile?

 

Also, you guys! I was nominated for another reward which I appreciate so much! This time it’s the Versatile Blogger Award. Thank you to the inspirational Jenny over at The Running Thriver! Check out her story and the other blogs she nominated; all are excellent.

Here are the rules of this award:


Rules of the Versatile Blogger Award:

1.  Thank the person(s) who shared the award with you by linking back to them in your post.

2.  Pass this award to 15 recently discovered blogs and let them know that you included them in your blog post.

3.  List 7 things about yourself.

 

Please check back soon for my list of recently discovered blogs! I have to take some time to pick my favourites.

Happy trails everyone, and have a great weekend!