B210K W5R2 Running scared

Hello running lovelies,

Thought I'd check in, I've been lurking but post-less for a while now.

As you may know I've been marching on through B210K. And now I'm so close to the end :D My next run will be 2 lots of 30 minutes with a one minute walk interval :o then I'm on to the graduation run, one hour running. Wow.

Having said that I had a bit of a bad experience while out running two runs ago and I thought I'd share with the group for some lovely free therapy.

I was away from home but determined to get out on my evening run anyway, and eventually made it out at around 9.30. About half way through my run a taxi pulled along side me. I didn't think too much of it, but when the car started to crawl along beside me, matching my own pathetic pace I glanced over and saw the driver had his window down and was leering and gesturing at me. I tried to ignore him and run on, feeling quite self conscious but determined not to react. He sped up, only to slow down and reverse back level with me and continue crawling along beside me. It wasn't yet dark and we were on a relatively busy road, however other drivers were overtaking him and he seemed untroubled to be acting so dangerously. I let him repeat his stop-start routine three times, taking at least five minutes before I responded. On the third time I slowed, then sprinted towards his window, both fists raised, screaming,


He sped off instantly and I, stubborn as I am, carried on my way, having not stopped running. At the time I was full of adrenaline and incredulous at the whole situation. I did go home and call the taxi firm and reported his reg. and described his behaviour and that was that. Or so I thought.

However, last night I came to run again only to find that this experience was lingering. I felt nervous. Despite it being hot I decided to wear my full length leggings and long sleeve thermal layer, I felt conspicuous. I also tucked my clunky old mobile in my back pocket and told my housemate where I was off to and how long I'd be (an unusual courtesy!). I still felt nervous. On my warm up walk my legs were shaky, my throat was dry, and it was clear I was going to be too hot in my chosen outfit. Not good when you're facing a 50 minute run. Anyway, I set off running, and despite the thirst not leaving and a generally twitchy and hostile attitude to all other road, pavement and park users I made it around my route. Phew.

Let's hope that one was a 'recovery' run, and that the next one will be better :)

Take care and happy running one and all, Emily x

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38 Replies

  • OMG what a git! Glad you reported him, he sounds a right bloody wierdo! I don't blame you for having a go at him. I bet he wasn't expecting that. He deserves the sack!

  • Thanks misswobble :)

    I did wait to calm down before calling, I was suddenly aware it was someone's livelihood. But then I thought you just can't treat people like that, they don't consider when they are having a bit of fun that they are scaring someone silly. I hope he was a bit scared back!

  • It was his choice to risk his job. You dont have to feel sorry for a perv. That's how they get away with it.

  • If you have his details I would actually report him to the police -what a creep!

    Hope you never have an experience like that again.

  • Thanks Ully, me too! I organised a time to call the taxi firm back so I'll bear it in mind if I see no action.

  • I am with ullyrunner, that is a horrid experience! Hope your ok, very wise to tell your house mates.

  • Thanks Vix. It was quite nice to know she was waiting for me, it's something I might do more often.

  • Hi Emily. Sorry to hear about your experience. I posted a while ago because (in general!) I have found that personal safety is the last thing we think about as runners. There are a lot of tips to consider, like letting someone know when & where you are running, how long you will be, keeping a mobile and/or personal alarm with you etc, that we should follow but often forget. This is especially true because we get used to our regular routes, and forget to be cautious during these runs, but also when circumstances change and we go running somewhere else when away on work or holiday.

    Thankfully you were ok this time. Please don't let the experience put you off running, and certainly there is a lesson for all of us to be more cautious. I hope you get a resolution with the taxi firm.

  • Btw: congratulations on nearly finishing b210k!! I'm following an extended b210k programme and graduation is about 8 weeks away for me. It must be amazing to be so close to your goal xx

  • Thanks Tanya. I won't be put off, I'm glad I got back out there. You're right though, safety should come first and I'm going to think of small ways to stay safer without loosing the whole feeling of freedom that I run for :)

    I'm so excited to be so near the end of the programme. I can't believe I'm running twice what I was five weeks ago. Good luck with your programme and keep us updated :)

  • Oh Emily, how horrible for you. No wonder you've been feeling jittery ever since. That sort of thing knocks your confidence and takes a while to forget. I'm with Ullyrunner on this one. If that guy was prepared to act like that in full view of other motorists, what is he prepared to do unobserved, late at night if a girl gets into his cab after a couple of drinks too many? He really shouldn't be driving a cab if he's that creepy!

    On a happier note, very very well done on getting so far through B210k. It's seen off a lot of good runners on here. Not long to go now. Looking forward to reading your graduation post x

  • Thanks ancientmum :) With the adrenaline I didn't realise how much it had bothered me, but it really became clear when I left the house to run again- I could physically feel the fear. Never mind, I'm back on the horse and I hope I shall be writing a graduation post very very soon :)

  • Well done for taking action and for staying cool enough to get the creep's details. I'd also report it to the police.

  • Thank you :) If you hang around for long enough someone is going to take your registration number!

  • You will have no joy with the taxi company itself. Trust me on this.... Contact your local council. Each council has a taxi licensing officer. Explain what has happened, explain how you felt. The licensing officer has the power to suspend/remove the drivers taxi license immediately. Believe it or not, private hire drivers have strict rules and regs and the licensing officer has a great deal of 'power' over them. In relation to informing the police, again, trust me on this.... At best, he has committed a public order offence and he could be 'invited' in for a voluntary interview. Assuming there were no other witnesses, he will most likely deny it and walk away Scott free. It won't bother him one bit... But contacting the council and the licensing officer will bother him and as I said, potentially his licence could be withdrawn. PLEASE don't think I'm making light of your experience here, I'm giving you an honest opinion of what will most likely happen if you report it to the police! Hit him where it hurts and contact the taxi licensing officer at the council. I hope you return to being settled whilst running soon

  • I would suggest this big time. As someone else said above if he's like that with someone out on a run in daylight on a busy road then lord knows what he'd be like with some drunk lass in his cab.

    Also, good on yer for getting back out there and running again. That takes balls. Don't let one f**kwit ruin your progress.

    And SUPER PROPS for being so close to graduating the B210K! Mad respect.

    Stay safe missis and keep on running xx

  • BettysbOps! I was just wondering how you were getting on the other day. It's all been quiet since the klaxon of glory :D do update us.

    Yay for overcoming this latest adversity and boo to that horrible man.

  • Ah man, the postgrad process has not gone smoothly - I've actually felt a bit driectionless and that's even with my "fab" self-written programme.

    Slowly but surely though I'm getting there, I cleared my self-imposed "week 1" yesterday (with difficulty in this searing heat" and hit 5.4k in 37 mins. Fine.

    If week 2 turns out to be cr@ppy, I'll undertake the B210K programme or Miles_Yonder's recommended HM podcast - as long as I keep pushing myself I'll be happy! x

  • Thank you for this, I had no idea that taxi drivers were regulated in this way. Knowing this gives me lots more confidence that I have a next step when I have my follow up call with the taxi firm.

    I'm hoping the next run will be easier too, I think the key is not to dwell too much or leave it too long :)

  • Agree with you fully,, the best thing to do. You never know what is the position of the driver in the taxi firm, it might not get anywhere

  • How horrible for you em, I agree with price74, a call to the council has got to be worth doing. If he does this sort of thing it is upsetting at the very least for runners or others like yourself, and on a busy road like that dangerous to other road users. Well done with your running anyway, sounds like things are going really well for you with the B210K x

  • Thanks no-excuse, I will be calling as soon as I've looked up the relevant person.

    I'm hoping the rest of the programme will go smoothly now- two more runs and I'll be a double graduate :)

  • OMG I agree call the council, I hate to say it but if he has done it once then chances are he has done it before or will do it again to someone else.

    One of the reasons I am a little nervous of roads when cycling is when I was a teenager (possibly pre teen I was very young) cycling home along a country lane (before the days of mobile phones) I had some idiots decide it would be fun to scare me and drive back and forth up the road and basically getting as close to me as they could and as fast as they could it was terrifying. I really thought they were trying to run me off the road, I wish I could have reported them but no way to record what was happening.

    Keep safe and it's something we all do we go out and don't think about it, I go out early morning before my husband is even awake beyond the fact I am going to the trail he doesn't actually know the routes I take. It's remote area. I have my phone. If I have Ferd I also have a high pitched dog whistle, but maybe us ladies especially should be adding personal attack alarms to our running kit.

    Just keep going out there, be seen, be safe.

    Woohooo you've nearly finished bridge to 5k

  • Thanks Spoonie :)

    That sounds like a horrible experience you had, and I think when you're so young it's much worse because you don't know how to understand it or deal with it so you just let it hang around.

    I am going to think more about safety. Up to now I've been going out phoneless with just my spare key, my ipod and my Garmin. I'm going to sort out a neat way of having my name and emergency contact on my person and maybe consider carrying a smaller phone or alarm. The thing is to strike the balance between feeling safe, but not losing the feeling of freedom that running brings...hmmm.

    I have nearly finished B210k, I can't really believe it. If I plod my way through an hour long run I will be giving myself a hearty pat on the back AND eating something outrageously calorific in celebration :)

  • Thanks KittyKat- it was pretty horrible, but reading the everyone's quite swear-y responses on here has cheered me up no end :)

    I have actually been looking for another form of exercise for my 'rest days'. I've never been a dancy/ zumba/ salsa type and don't really want to fork out for a gym so a self defense class might be perfect :)

    Hopefully I'll be back soon, with a much happier graduation post. As my dad always says, 'Don't let the b*****ds get you down'.

    Thanks again and happy running, Emily x

  • Hi Kitty haven't heard much from you recently. Hope you're ok and that the run/stretch/run regime is still suiting you. What have you been up to m'dear? :)

  • So glad you're still injury free. If you find any good core strength exercises would you let me know please. I suspect that's at the root of my knee and other niggles. Take care x

  • Crappy jerk! Good job calling his boss! Hope you run past the nerves he has caused.

  • I'm sure I can, even if it is very slowly :) . Jerk indeed.

  • That's terrible! If I was you I would also contact your local authority and report the driver to the taxi licensing department. I don't think they will be too impressed with the behaviour of a registered driver (if he is registered) and may even look into whether he is a 'fit and proper person' to be holding a taxi license. I wouldn't like to think he was driving any of my family about.

    PS just read the above replies and see others have suggested contacting your local authority. Worth doing.

  • Thanks Paul :)

    Nothing proper about that chap. I had no idea such a department existed but will be working out who they are and calling.

  • Emily, that's horrid. :-( What an absolute knob to behave like that toward someone. Personally I'd have called the police; not much they can do bar have a word if you have no evidence of the matter, but this arse may already be a person of interest to them and on their records; if not, he bloody should be as he sounds a complete menace.

    No wonder you felt conspicuous after that, you're bound to after such an unpleasant experience. Try to keep your route varied and always tell someone your route beforehand. I sometimes feel a bit isolated in the early hours to take various safety precautions too. Hopefully you'll not see the creep again. It may be worth reporting him to the police still.

    Well done on doing so well with B210K!

    Stay safe, always. x

  • Nasty man, causing such damage to my lovely running invisibility cloak :)

    I'll be calling the council and taking a few more precautions in future, though not too many, I won't have him ruining every run of the future. I think, sadly, this stuff can happen any time of day anywhere. I feel slightly comforted by the fact I was away from home and so am very unlikely to see that particular individual again.

    Onwards M_Y to 10K :)

  • I'm so sorry you had to deal with this Emily, what an asshole! Everyone has given such good advice, all I wanted to add was that making a report to the police, every if it doesn't progress, may not be a bad idea. You never know, he may have harrassed ladies like this before, or will do in the future - at least it will be recorded on his file. Something to think about.

    I think how you handled the situation and what you're doing now to make him accountable for his appalling behaviour is great. Well done for standing up for yourself :)

  • Yes Pollypanda, totally agree with this, at the least they will log it and have it recorded on file xxx

  • Thanks Pollypanda, I will do my best. These people don't give a second thought to how they impact other people's lives, I hope he will in future.

  • This must have been very scary for you Em. Very disturbing that he would think of even doing this, but to do it in daylight on a busy road sounds seriously weird. I would definitely report it to the police , they will then have a note of it on file , also the local Council licensing office .Glad you are back out there , and it hasn't put you off running , Good Luck :-) xxx

  • Hi Em Im glad you have highlighted this personal sadistic account to the forum. I would totally agree all relevant advice suggested. I would even encourage you to run with a friend or work colleague if its later in evening or join a local running group. One other suggestion to the many, I would have written into your local newspaper, briefing your personal account. This may even highlight others who may have been in a similar challenging vulnerable position. People who do such actions, will no doubt continue their sadistic pattern of seeking those who appear vulnerable etc.. Hope all those other suggestions have a positive response and i would invest in a mobile phone that can capture live footage of events or the need to response to emergencies. The amount of times I have seen incidents on the main roads whilst Im running, you be surprise it favours your safety as for legal recording purposes or as a diary account. However don't let this deter you in your strife to achieving your running and health goals.. Keep safe in company.

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