I Cried “Wolf!” with React Mobile (And The Response Was Awesome!)

I took this selfie on St. Joe's trail. Most of my runs are solo. I always carry my phone, and React Mobile adds another layer of safety and security.
A selfie on St. Joe’s trail. Most of my runs are solo. I always carry my phone, and React Mobile adds another layer of safety and security.

I recently heard about a cool new app targeted to runners called React Mobile that allows a select group of family and friends (or your entire Facebook community, if you’d like) to track your whereabouts. In an emergency situation, you can simply tap your smart phone screen and an alert message is sent out along with a map pinpointing exactly where you are.

The system sounded a little awkward to me at first. I’m supposed to pull my phone out of my waist belt, log in to my home screen, find the app, and then tap it? Precious minutes would tick by, allowing an attacker to do his damage and get away. But after playing around with it a bit, I realized it’s a very simple and effective process. You start the tracking function, “Follow Me,” at the beginning of your run, and the app is ready to go if and when you actually need it.

The React Mobile home screen is very user friendly—one tap is all it takes to ask for help.
The React Mobile home screen is very user friendly—one tap is all it takes to ask for help.

The first time I activated React Mobile I was sitting safely at my desk. Within seconds, my Dad called from across the country asking if he needed to book a flight, and my cousin texted from across town to let me know she was loading the babies into the minivan and coming over to help. Oops—I really should have warned them ahead of time that this was only a test. I also should have figured out how to turn the alarm signal off before activating it. (Here’s a video explaining how to do that and more.)

All in all, this app is great! I felt super safe—not to mention super loved—and I recommend it for anyone who runs unpopulated trails or paths alone. Oh, did I mention React Mobile is free? Go get it already!

Have you tried React Mobile? What helps you feel more secure when you’re running alone? 

“Nice Socks! Nice A$$, Too!”

These socks got me some unwanted attention, but I still love them!
These compression socks from Lunatik Athletiks ($44) got me some unwanted attention, but I still heart them!

Uh, what did that guy just say?!?

I was just starting out on a long run when some creepy guy driving a late 90’s pickup decided to yell out to me. (Why are they always driving beat up trucks?) This isn’t the first time I’ve gotten a catcall, but no one has ever commented on my socks before. My initial thought: “Yeah, my socks rock!” My next: “YUCK!”

I spent the next few minutes trying to shake off that icky someone’s-watching-me feeling, and was relieved when I could turn onto a pedestrian path headed in a different direction.

Every female runner I know has a story like this—making it extremely important to be prepared for unwanted taunts and to know what to do if the harassment escalates.

Run steady and ignore, ignore, ignore More often than not this creep just wants to get a rise out of you. When he doesn’t, he’ll likely move on. If he stays with you…

Go where he can’t Run up to someone’s front door, into a store, or to a place with other people. If you’re not close to anything like that…

Do a 180—and pick up the pace It’s hard for a vehicle to completely turn around in the middle of the street. This move will buy you time to figure out how to get somewhere safe.

Have your cell phone ready Just seeing you whip it out could be enough to make him stop. Try to take photos of the driver, the car, and the license plate if you can. And call the cops!

Buddy up in sketchy areas If your route sends you through a neighborhood where you’ve been harassed before, consider finding a new course. At the very least, run with a friend—there’s power in numbers.

It’s sad that we need to be ready for these types of scenarios. But it’s better to be safe than sorry.

 

Now, back to my awesome socks… I’m a big fan of compression socks (I’ve written about them before), and this particular pair is really cool. They’re Zuza Performance Compression Socks from Lunatik Athletiks—and I love them. Not only are they super stylin’, they hug my calves in a way that promotes circulation and improves muscle recovery. My legs felt great after 9 miles and I plan to wear them on all of my long runs going forward. (And, hopefully the attention I get in them next time will be more positive!)

 

Have you ever been heckled while running? What did you do to diffuse the situation?

 

Disclaimer: Lunatik Athletiks sent me a pair of Zuza Performance Compression Socks free of charge. I was not paid to review Lunatik Athletiks or Zuza Performance Compression Socks, and I did not promise to include the brand or the product in a post. All opinions are mine and unbiased.