Marines have a great deal of responsibility to themselves, the Corps, and to the United States. With that responsibility, they are expected to be ever-ready for a number of challenges, both mentally and physically. By creating a maintained posture of readiness, servicemen and women do a great deal to remain poised for whatever may come. On the physical end of things, Marines are expected to meet fitness requirements that allow them to be prepared for whatever the USMC asks, in terms of combat and other job performances.
In order to meet these requirements, regular physical training (PT) and Physical Fitness Tests (PFT) are conducted. So whether Marines are performing their scheduled PT, aiming for particular scores during the PFT, or simply getting in some additional exercise, the Marine Corps encourages a fit and healthy lifestyle. With the days getting longer and the weather more pleasant by the day, individuals may be taking longer runs or trying to improve on their times. With that in mind, CMC(SD) advises Marines to use caution and utilize safe practices during extended physical activity. Below, you can find a few tips on running safety.
- Be aware. Before and during your run, make sure to ask yourself a series of questions. Are you familiar with your route? Are your shoes tied securely? Are you dressed appropriately for the weather and for the duration of your run? Make certain you're prepared as best as you can be, so you don't put yourself in a bad situation by becoming disoriented or distracted.
- Be visible. When participating in PT on base or during organized training, Marines are expected to wear the appropriate gear to remain visible. Particularly, make certain to wear your required glowbelt during the mandated times before sunrise and after the sun sets. If you happen to be running on your own time, wear bright clothes to make yourself visible to drivers, and also utilize reflective gear when the lighting requires it.
- Always carry ID. Running with identification will allow responders to best help you and notify necessary parties, in the event that you're injured or require medical assistance.
- Avoid distractions. If possible, make a point to run without an MP3 player or other audio devices. Listening to music could prevent you from hearing oncoming cars, cyclists, or any other hazards that could otherwise be detected audibly. Again, be aware.
- Don't assume. Much like driving, you should never assume that other people on the road will do exactly what's expected of them. Watch cars carefully and don't run across streets under the assumption that their path of travel will avoid you. Likewise with bicycles; mind their movement and if you need to pass, let them know by shouting out the side on which you're passing.