When many women get ready to go for a run, their prep looks something like this: Put on favorite running shorts, lace up shoes, pick a playlist, grab a weapon, head out the door.
You read that right. Headlines about women being attacked by men (or even animals) while out for a jog are a steady drumbeat in the news cycle; for women, running safety is often top of mind, and for many that means running with products that could help them stay safe in the event of being attacked while on a run.
In a Twitter thread posted earlier this week, women began sharing the things they take with them to help them feel safe when they run—everything from their dogs to a knife—and it’s getting a ton of attention on social media. “One of my mom groups has a thread that is just women listing and recommending which kind of protection they take when them when they go out running (i.e., pepper spray, alarm necklaces, whistles, etc.) in case you wondered what being a woman is like,” writer Amanda Deibert posted earlier this week before asking: “Also, women: What do you use when you go out running?”
The thread prompted a flood of responses from women that are infuriating and heartbreaking—women are carrying knives in the pockets of their running vests just to feel safe while out for a run. But their recommendations are also incredibly practical. “I won’t wear headphones so I can be more alert to my surroundings,” one woman wrote. “Would be nice to listen to music though.”
Here are some of the best running safety products for women recommended by women (and where you can get them).
“The whistle I use is called the Whistles for LIFE Tri-Power Whistle,” one woman recommended. “I have yellow because I feel it’s more visible than red.”
“I use two,” one woman shared. “One in each hand.”
Self-defense key chain
“My daughter starts 6th grade in August and will need to use the school bus for the first time. The bus doesn’t come to our house, meaning she’ll need to walk and wait at the end of our road every morning,” one woman wrote. “She now has a cell phone, rape whistle, and one of these. She’s eleven.”
Pepper spray glove
“I like that it’s really only a partial glove and that I don’t have to grip/hold the pepper spray the whole run,” one woman said. “I definitely feel safer running with it.”
In the event that something does go wrong on a run or hike, several women mentioned carrying a few first aid supplies.