I totally enjoyed reading this article about the VIRTUE OF A GOOD LONG WALK!
As a life long boater, I have deep beliefs about the power of nature to improve your health and lift your spirit, especially when sad or depressed. For decades, I’ve taught our kids to watch and appreciate God’s Free Art Show, something others call sunrises and sunsets. Alone time—appreciating nature, is so healing!
Ignored by the author of this wonderful article, is that fact that this healing choice is an elusive experience for many adults, especially women, and almost all kids. Why? Because of the fear of crime and society’s constant, new-normal safety warning: Don’t walk alone!
If I conducted “women on the street” interviews, asking: “how many times do you walk alone in the woods for deep thinking and healing?” I can visualize the screeching responses: “ARE YOU OUT OF YOUR MIND? If I walked alone in the woods, I’d probably be attacked and then my family would blame me, stating that: ‘I asked for it!’” Lady-readers! Are you nodding your head in agreement right now?
During seminars, I enjoy asking the walkers/joggers to identify themselves. Then I ask them: “How many of you are warned constantly (…by your loved ones): “You’re going to be killed—jogging (alone)!” Giggling nervously, almost 100% raise their hands. I sarcastically recommend this response: “Thanks for the safety warning and I’d like to offer you a safety warning too—if you don’t start walking or jogging (exercising), you’ll likely die of heart disease or cancer—before a criminal ever finds you!” Ouch—right?
So, if you are—or want to be—a bold, brave freedom-fighter nature nut —here are some effective truths  that will greatly improve your safety while walking/jogging alone:
- Visualize an “electric fence” around your body. Think of it as a large hula-hoop sized LOVE-LINE! No one gets near or crosses your LOVE-LINE without your permission. Period. This is an attitude rooted in: No tolerance. No exceptions. Like a dog’s invisible “electric fence” there is both an auditory warning—then physical pain (to correct dangerous behavior) every time!
- Know that your biggest risk is a surprise attack from behind. Walk/jog with the habit of turning your head, regularly, due to curiosity not fear! Besides accepting 100% responsible for the entire 360 degree circle around yourself, you’ll see lots of cool things you’d otherwise miss only looking forward. Curious head turning dismantles a surprise attack opportunity. Likewise, if you pass someone on a path, widen your LOVE LINE space and look back immediately, confidently! Do not be embarrassed by your safety curiosity! No way is anyone going to trick you by passing you—then grabbing you from behind.
- Your second biggest risk is blocked-hearing due to music in both your ears. Awatcher sizing you up for the audacity of running/jobbing alone, can see earphones//wires from a distance and assume you’re an easy target because you can’t hear. I understand the value of music while running/jogging. So, I’m wondering if you’ll compromise! For the sake of the messing with the watchers,make it obvious you are wearing just one earphone, other one dangling. I’m thinking our Creator gave us two ears, so we can walk/jog while listening to music—and nature—at the same time. Allow no one to sneak up on you!
- Jog/walk gripping a cell phone, water bottle and/or Kubotan© key chain in your hands. The grip/squeeze of objects while walking/jogging helps you control your fear by circulating your blood flow and enhancing deep belly-breathing. In a desperate situation, a gripped object can serve as an extremely effective defensive weapon when thrust in the throat. Absorb this core survival principle: the winner in violence is the one who is breathing when the violence ends. The human throat is frail. It’s a structure of weakness that collapses easily when struck rapidly by a gripped object or the flat edge “L” position of your hand. In a worse case scenario, think of your hands as 2, two sided weapons. LITTLE LOVE is the baby finger side. BIG LOVE is the thumb & index finger side. Both sides are equally dangerous when thrust into an unstoppable attacker’s throat. Fact: your two hands create four effective weapons. Great News! You can’t leave home without your LOVE hands. In other words, your four (possibly deadly) weapons are constantly stuck on you!You are always armed! How cool is that core belief?
Nope. It’s not your imagination. If attacked, you will strike faster—if you have an object in your LOVE hand. “Touching” an attacker—skin to skin—is creepy, disgusting and therefore can cause hesitation! So I highly recommend that you allow a gripped cellphone, water bottle or Kubotan© to create the serious “survival touching” —injury—for you!
PS. A few years back, I witnessed our black lab, Mac, stop an unwanted intruder, a raccoon, from entering our home. Mac reacted to the violation of her LOVE LINE with ferocious barking (verbal warning). When the intruder lunged at Mac, our sweet dog responded (physically) with an immediate bite to the raccoon’s THROAT. AH-mazing! The severely injured raccoon retreated immediately and staggered back into the woods.  While wiping the raccoon’s blood off Mac’s precious face, I realized dogs (animals) don’t have the fighting advantage of human LOVE HANDS or gripped objects—to help them strike the throat effectively. Thankfully, our normally peaceful dog didn’t hesitate to do whatever it takes —including a bloody “touch”—to save her own life. Again,nature teaches.