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Personal Protection While Running and Cycling.

January 2014

I read a post about a girl who was brutally attacked and murdered while running in a park.  She was home for Christmas from college.

In his post the author suggested that women carry a taser or pepper spray if they run alone…

First, both are viable options but I’d back the pepper spray up with something more… Lethal, or at least damaging.  Spray alone is a nice touch, especially if you’re a pacifist, but these attacks happen in city parks because there is little chance of adverse consequence to the crook. The taser is cool but a bit bulky to conceal while cycling or running.

Personally, I’ve had enough with these attacks and would like to respectfully recommend a knife/pepper spray combo (good for cycling and running).  It’s time to do something to actually stop the attacks.  Being aware is great, but being aware and unarmed and a buck will get you a cup of coffee.  The only way to end them is to make their attempt costly.

Now, it just so happens that I know an ex-criminal or two so I’m about to pass on what one in particular shared with my wife and I for when we run in Flint (we carry knives – legal size of course – and much lighter than a cop).  First, this is not the movies.  Criminals know if they show up to a hospital with a bunch of twelve-inch knife wounds, questions will be asked so they do not want that to happen.  Most will see the blade and run like the punks they are.  If you choose the pepper spray/knife combo, aim for the eyes, pull your knife and wait until he’s down before you call the cops.  If he runs away, let him go, call the cops.  Second, do not hold your knife like they do in the movies. You do not want to stab your perp and hope you hit something good. You want to fuck his ass up and get him the hell away from you.  Be brutal.  Hold your knife with the handle in your palm, blade forward so the sharp part of the blade starts just passed your pinkie finger (hold your arm extended as if you just threw a punch, make a fist – if you’re right-handed the sharp part of the blade will point forward and to your extreme right – left-handed same principle, blade sticks out to the left – now angle the non-sharp part of the blade back toward your forearm so you can get some leverage and your set). If your attacker comes at you, punch and slash – go LONG. This is how you do efficient damage.  Go for the face and throat, eyes and if you must, hands and wrists.

For knives, if you wish to comply with the law, check with your local law enforcement agency’s website. Get a high quality blade with a quick release.  If you’re left-handed, make sure to get a double or reversible thumb stud and learn how to open it and move it into position in your hand in a heartbeat. If you don’t want to resort to hand to hand first, run with a can of pepper spray in your weak hand with the blade (folded of course) in the strong hand as a backup (if you carry a water bottle, get one with a strap – blade in that hand against the bottle, spray in the other).  If you are cycling do NOT spray straight forward in the direction you’re going, the blow-back will blind you.  Spray to either side.

Ladies, you are attacked by evil fucking people… If some guy comes at you with a knife, do you want to take the chance that if you just let him screw you he’ll leave you alone?  Only to find out, “Oops he planned on using that knife after all” like the guy who took that girl’s life?!

Finally, now that I’ve pissed a bunch of hippies and pacifists off, take those damned ear buds the fuck out of your head and pay attention to your surroundings.  Look at it this way:  Rapists are looking for the chick with the ear buds…  They’re the one’s who are not paying attention.  They’re the easy targets.

Now, personally, I don’t care what the law says about carrying a knife.  If they ever decide to ban them they’ll just have to catch me.  I’d much prefer explaining to an officer that it was unfortunate that an attacker bled out on the way to the hospital than it be me – or worse, my wife, lying there bleeding to death on a trail.


  1. sophie988 says:

    Wow, running outside is great and ive never really thought twice about being attacked or anything… guess its one of that mentality of “oh it will never happen to me”

    • bgddyjim says:

      There’s a 99% chance – or better – that you won’t ever be attacked, especially in a rural setting, but I’m a firm believer in “better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it”.


      • Pss says:

        I was attacked by some men one had his hand on my neck trying to force me to keep my mouth and the other one had a knife on my stomach, luckily for me my aunt passed by with her car without any notification. God was great for me that day because if she did not pass by luck who now what might have happened

      • bgddyjim says:

        Seems there is no depth to which losers like that will sink.

  2. This is interesting. I also don’t think twice about running outside. But I never run with headphones in so as to be aware, of other people, of cars, etc. My brother recently recommended a knife of some type so that I’m not defenseless. This is definitely food for thought.

  3. Sandra says:

    I am with you all the way on this one. I never run or bike with pods. Also, if you are a guy and going the same pace aaas a woman just behind her (or 25′ or so). Pass her for crying out loud, even if that means you run right in front. She worries about you there behind her where she cannot see you. 🙂

  4. Karen says:

    Having grown up in the city, I always have an awareness when out alone (no matter the environment). It’s awful to think about, but stuff happens. I usually carry a knife hiking and camping, but usually not running or biking. I think it’s worth bringing up though, so thank you for doing so. In all situations, I think crime is an opportunist. The more aware you are, if you minimize being alone, running in secluded places, etc…the better.

  5. cyardin says:

    Wow, fitness is brutal in the States! But you are 100% right, you must protect yourself. And you are even more right when you say that if it comes to physical violence you have to go brutal! It is the attacker or you.

    Too bad the assailant when we ride is more than likely a rectangular box of metal with four rubber wheels and some glass viewing panels. Would love to know what the defense against that type of assailant is (not sure there is one… yet).

    • bgddyjim says:

      Check out Anna’s comment… She lives in Oz. Only difference is we’re allowed to fight back in the States.

      Hell, I’ve carried a pistol on a bike trip once because I didn’t trust the area (again, legal here).

      Life is brutal anywhere for women, just trying to do my part to help them be less likely to end up a stat.

      Btw… Murder with a pistol is way higher in the US than in the UK but violent crimes at ten times more frequent over there. Also, a pistol is used 4 times more by an innocent person protecting themselves than in the commission of a crime in the US. Don’t believe everything you hear about the US… Most of it is skewed and misreported by our (and your) lying anti-gun lobby. Being able to fight back, with more than hopes and dreams is very nice indeed. Gives the good guys a fighting chance.

  6. Anna Kochetkova says:

    It is just something that happens 😦 A giant park I went for a run so many times once was a murder scene for this girl who went for an early morning jog – she got raped and killed there 😦 I was once attacked (they tried to steal my handbag and succeeded) and all I cud think of was “I am getting killed” (and I attended fighting classes). paper spray, knives or guns – nothing helps if you are not prepared to be attacked! Awful! Awful!

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