What an amazing feeling it is, breeze in your face, pounding the pavement, enjoying all that exercising is about. Your favourite songs from your latest playlist blasting through your earphones oblivious to all that is around you.
What a great day it is for you, and potentially only you.
I am writing this blog for people who exercise outdoors and wear earphones, in particular females. I have witnessed far too many times the dangerous distraction and people’s inability to react when both earphones are in their ears whilst out exercising.
It is an amazing feeling to escape in your own head whilst listening to your music and exercising. Not having to think about work, kids, husbands, wives, study or any other worry in your world. However, there are a large number of people who are so oblivious to their surroundings and anyone else around them because one of their major senses is blocked by earphones.
You may think I’m overreacting but one scenario really stands out for me. I was running through a bush reserve, gorgeous sunny day, light breeze, gravel under foot, bush surroundings and not another person in sight. I eventually approached another runner from behind clearly enjoying her run as much as I was. It was only when I was literally next to her that she darted to the side, surprised at my appearance. I apologised for startling her and continued on my run. It only took moments for my thoughts to go into sisterhood protective mode. What if it wasn’t me who approached this girl and it was someone not as ‘nice’ as myself. I felt compelled to turn back. Once I had reached her she was obviously surprised when I put my hand up for her to stop. When she took her earphones out the music was so loud I could very clearly hear Katrina and the Waves Walking on Sunshine. I expressed my concern for her inability to react due to her not hearing my approach. I suggested running with one earphone out.
My concern doesn’t just apply to females, it includes all people who listen to their music with earphones while exercising outdoors. It’s bad enough these days that people are too concerned about themselves and the 30 centimeter perimeter around them that they are barely aware of others. Placing two earphones in your ears, generally speaking, gives you the excuse for ignorant behaviour. This dangerous distraction can cause harm to you and others. Walking into other people, stepping into the path of a bike, not acknowledging when someone moves for you, the inability to hear a horn or a bell and basically being completely ignorant to what’s going on around you.
Yes, be stuck in your head with your music, your thoughts, your nothings, but just do it with one earphone in your ear and be aware of your surroundings and others. Maybe you might actually hear your fellow runners or walkers bid you good morning and not spoil someone else’s day with your blissful ignorance.