MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The abduction and murder of Eliza Fletcher are especially having an impact on the running community.
As the community grapples with the loss of the mother and school teacher, the importance of running safety is being brought to the forefront.
FOX13 spoke with the owner of a running shop about some safety tips you can keep in mind when you go for a run.
We want to be clear: the purpose of this story is not to blame the runner but instead to share some tips for people who want to feel safe running outside alone.
“I think it’s going to make people more conscious of being aware of their surroundings,” Bryan Roberson, the co-owner of Breakaway Running in Memphis, said. “The main thing is if you have the availability to run with other people, group runs are great.”
Roberson said runners should always be aware of what is going on around them.
“I know everyone loves headphones and running with their earbuds, but it just takes away one of your senses,” he said.
Roberson said runners should consider varying from their usual routes so their routine is not too predictable.
He also suggested being thoughtful when posting online about your route.
“Runners get into a habit, and it’s a good habit for the most part, but if you don’t run the same route every day, that is probably the best thing,” Roberson said.
Friday, one week after Fletcher’s abduction, a group of women plans to finish her run near the University of Memphis in her honor.
Danielle Heineman is helping to organize the run.
“I have men saying they want to follow us on bikes, we want to be at intersections blocking traffic, we want to walk up and down the street to watch your cars so they don’t get broken into. We just have so much support from the running community as a whole,” she said.
Another safety tip for you: when going out for a run, Roberson said you should text a friend or family member where you are going and consider finding apps that can safely track your route.
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