liveonearth (liveonearth) wrote,

A Request of Runners in Pandemic Times

Living in an urban area I, like many, exercise in the park.  I was doing so before the pandemic started and I have continued.  My local park is big and beautiful and is seeing a higher level of use now that the gyms are closed.  It feels safe and reasonable except for one thing: the runners who brush past on the paved trails.  They are too close; many runners are making no effort to distance from others who use the same trails.  This is not good enough.

Runners, please run farther away from the other people who use public trails.  In most cases you can run off trail to give people, especially elders, a wide berth.  Consider it part of your workout.  Elders are much less able to avoid you than you are to avoid them.  Running up behind people does not give them an opportunity to avoid you.  There are sections of trail that are restricted in width--you can choose different routes.  Some runners have taken to running on sidewalks and side streets to avoid too-close pedestrians.  This is reasonable and appreciated, and might make it possible for you to enter that thoughtless consciousness that some runners enjoy.

If you are young or Republican and "not worried" about the virus, that does not make it acceptable for you to frighten or expose others.  A certain amount of kindness is expected just because you are part of the human family.  Thoughtlessness and selfishness are not admirable, and I don't think anyone wants to be that way.  We all have the potential to be better than that, to be conscientious and caring in our interactions with each other.  So please, runners, take the extra steps to let all people have a minimum of six feet distance, no matter who they are.  I for one thank you for this kindness.

Tags: america, culture, disease, exercise, kindness, pandemic, public health, responsibility

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