I’m a runner. I have had the opportunity to run trails and roads all over the US as a military wife. Busy roads on the border town of El Paso, TX. Beautiful city sidewalks in Columbus, GA. Back roads of upstate New York.
Running is way for me to clear my mind even when our children joined our lives. S was in a running stroller seconds after he was big enough to be propped up. When Miss A came around we bought a double stroller. My kids enhance my life; they don’t impede it. I’m fortunate enough to be home with them full-time and, with that, I’m responsible for their protection full-time. It’s easy to know where my guns are at home and feel comfortable defending my family there, but it is more difficult to do while juggling an oversized double stroller, two kids under 5 screaming for snacks, and usually a dog on a winding road I have never seen.
There are hundreds of stories, with a quick Google search, of mother’s being mugged, raped, or killed while running. It’s a vulnerable time for women. They want to unplug and decide to leave their phone at home. They need to “just get away” so they don’t tell anyone where they are going. They need a new scene so they take a new path down a dark trail. Momma’s need to be SMART! Especially when little lives are in your hands.
The fanny pack in the picture is what my husband and I use. (I have it positioned a little more toward my back for the picture purposes.) It is an older version of the HawkePaks Micro GunPak. This thing can hold anything you have. The pack pictured has a loaded HK USP 45 Tactical with extra 12 round magazine. The downside to this is that most anyone that is “in the know” will assume you will have a gun if you are wearing a fanny pack. For me it is better to have a gun and have someone know I have one, than need one and not have it because I didn’t want to be too suspicious. I’m a law-abiding citizen and will always carry proper ID and permits on my person when carrying.
Another great option out there is a belly band. There’s a huge list of belly band holsters on Amazon. (Conveniently, postpartum belly bands are listed as an “other suggestions” for my search. I thought it was funny.) Belly band is recommended to me by Mrgunsngear as something he uses on a regular basis. These holsters are made so the gun doesn’t roll or bounce. The elastic is comfortable and easily adjustable.
Mrgunsngear also recommended I look into a Flashbang holster as an option for women. This holster is designed to strap around middle bra strap and tuck under an underwire bra. The holster can also be worn with a sports bra and in athletic clothes as a concealed gun. This holster is going on my list of things to buy!
I talked with a longtime friend of mine who is also a police officer. He wears a shirt like the UnderTech Undercover Concealment Tank. This may be an option for some, but his critique of this is that the gun bounces a good bit while you are running. Something to keep in mind.
When you decide which gun holster works for you, you’ll want to take it out on the range and try firing with it on. Our Hawkepak has a pull tab for easy access. An exercise I am going to do on the next range day is run with the fanny pack for a distance, then end up at the range and work with my equipment to simulate the fatigue I will have if we are attacked while running. This is one of the best exercises I can do to replicate a scenario where I may be attacked while running. Having the stroller with me would be an added bonus. Where am I going to position my children when an attacker comes for me? What if they come for my children? I have to be prepared and practice the scenarios to be sure I’m ready should some (add expletive here) comes for me.
Running helps me release stress. I just plain feel better! I’m not going to let the fear of some yahoo keep me from getting out, enjoying fresh morning air, and releasing any extra stress. I’m going to carry while I run and feel confident in my own abilities to protect myself and my children should the need arise.