Safety Running Tips For Beginners + HipZIPP Review

…And another work week in the books. Despite knocking out a cold, long work days, and disappearing sunlight, the days seemed to fly by.


Too soon? NEVER.

We’re just about a week away from the Power of She 10k, and about the point where I regret the decision for signing up for a race, and can’t wait until it’s over phase of training.



Until I actually finish, and am completing my registration for the next one while crossing the finish line. It’s a love/hate kinda relationship.

Besides my cruddy run on Tuesday, the cooler temps are gorgeous to run in, and are the reason I always sign up for Fall races.

Now that I’ve trained for and run a few races (you can find the recaps on my running page), I’ve learned a lot about what to do and not do on a run…mostly by making terrible mistakes and declaring never to make them again. And now to make sure you never have to.

Whether your just starting out, or having been around the block (literally) a few times, it’s never a bad idea to play it safe. Here’s some of my best running tips for beginners, plus a sweet GIVEAWAY at the end!

The tips that I wish someone told me when I started running!


Let someone know when & where you’re going.


IMG_2152(from my painful long run on Tuesday)


Maybe it’s the fact that I watch way too many crime and mystery shows, but I’m a bit paranoid when it comes to safety. If you recall my rookie running mistake, aka ending up running on the shoulder of a main road in the pitch black, all I could think about was being that stupid bimbo blonde in a horror flick that asks “who’s there?” when entering a decrepit barn. DEAD.

But since I let MJ know my route, she came and picked me up, right after the fact that I thought she was a psycho killer coming to kidnap me. Thanks Mom. 🙂

Lesson learned, either leave a note or text someone to know where you’ll be before you head out, and let them know when you get back. Even though I (now) run with my phone, it never hurts to have someone out there who knows you’re out there if anything should happen.

Change up your route and/or times.




This one may or may not be to attributed to my strong procrastination skills and/or internal battles with lazy Emily. Either way, it makes for a safe and stalker-free Emily as well.

Running the same route, the same days, at the same time, makes you predictable. You need to Lady Gaga that run, wear a meat suit one day, and sing with Tony Bennett the next.

So if you can literally accomplish those tasks during a run, you have far less problems that chafing and blisters. What I’m trying to say is change up your routine. Try a new loop, or run your usual loop backwards. Go Sunday morning instead of at 5. Not only does this make you a stronger runner, but also a smarter runner. How do you like THAT combo meal?!


Be aware of your surroundings.




Now I’ve had my runs, where I look back and think..”WTF was I thinking?!”

Like running around the dirt roads of France. At dusk. With no phone. And barely speaking the language. IN A FOREIGN COUNTRY.

Or on a mountain road at dusk (see a trend?) with the threats of a Mama moose and her baby barreling out of the woods, and the threats of a thunderstorm above. Doh.

So as my running child, I ask you to do as I say not as I do. My favorite way to explore a new place is to hit the streets for a run. There’s simply nothing like it. But I play it as safe as possible when I do.

This means going without music, trusting my instincts, staying near well populated or well lit areas, and taking it easy. Being totally aware of your surroundings not only maximizes what you get from exploring a new place on foot, but puts YOU in control of whether or not you have a great run, or star in the next Hostel film.


Bring the  important stuff.

This goes back to my rookie running mistake. At the time, I didn’t have any fancy gadgets, or fun running gear. Just a bright colored shirt (thank God), a beat up $15 pair of sneaks, and ipod shuffle, and a stopwatch.

Now that I’ve learned my lesson, and watched too many more episodes of Homicide Hunter, I bring a little more heat with me.


pepper spray.jpg


I asked for some pepper spray for my birthday last year, after a girl who was running got kidnapped in NH. A little too close to home for me. I bring it along with me if I’m testing out a new route, or am running really early or late in the day.




I may not have upgraded my running ensemble very much, but the gear department has definitely seen some improvements. When I connected with the folks at SLS3 to write a review in exchange for my very own HipZIPP, it was actually perfect timing. I was already on the hunt for a new way to carry my stuff aside from cramming them into the much too small pocket in my shorts, or in the sweat valley of my sports bra.

I love the fact that it has two pockets, one in the front and another in the back so I can easily store “long-term storage” items aka things I don’t need right away like keys or my phone in the back, and the things I may need to get easily like my ipod, chapstick, or fuel items in the front.

I actually forgot I had it on the first time i tried it until the end of my run, where I was convinced I dropped my phone since I couldn’t feel it tucked away in my “long term storage” pocket. I got the size small in turquoise since it’s my favorite color, and it fits like a charm. Not too constricting. Not too slippy. Juuusst right. 🙂


Listen to your body.

At the end of the day, if you’re running, you should be enjoying it..for the most part. You’ll have crappy runs, but you’ll also have days when you could run forever. The important part is to listen to your body, and give it what it asks for. That might be taking a walk break or two…or five. Or cutting your run short when it is just too darn hot. Or pushing a little harder to show that hill who’s boss. Trust your gut, show up, and as Sara says, embrace the hill.




And now it’s time to win your very own HipZIPP!

Just enter with the Rafflecopter below for your chance to win!

Or if you’d rather get your hands on one now, you can get $10 off your order with the promo code “HZ10” AND get 99 cent shipping! You can order yours on the SLS3 website.

Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Make it a great day!


*I received free product in exchange for this review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

8 thoughts on “Safety Running Tips For Beginners + HipZIPP Review

  1. Omg I am just as paranoid when running! I even think about going at different times so no random person gets my route down (although I think I’ve run at the same time the past week..oops). When it’s getting darker or I’m trying a new route, I carry my key with me (to, um, stab someone if they come at me). Sometimes I wish I had a big dog to run with or something so I could be less worried!

    That hip zipp is so cute!!
    Amanda @ Diary of a Semi-Health Nut recently posted…Should We Aim to Feel SORE After Every Workout?My Profile

  2. Pingback: WIAW: The Green Monster - Sinful Nutrition

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