I like to run outside for exercise. In Michigan — where seasonal temperatures can swing 100 degrees and, depending on the area, offer a plethora of wildlife encounters — this can be quite a challenge. The temperature swings are manageable with the right apparel, of course, but the wildlife… that’s another story. Our suburban home sits right on the edge of suburbia and rural horse country, so there’s plenty of opportunity to see a wide range of wildlife, even in an 80-home subdivision. In fact, several of our neighbors recently spotted a coyote making itself at home here.
I have no desire to interact with the coyote and no desire to harm it, either. I hope it simply moves on and out into the more rural areas north of our home. But if it turned on me or one my family or a neighbor, I’d do whatever I could to stop it. By the way, same goes for any two-legged fiend wishing to do harm.
So here is some of the gear I carry (and tactics I use) when I run.
Gear: Running shoes
In short, if you can get away from danger, do it. If you carry a gun, don’t think you’re somehow empowered to run toward danger. Avoid the fight if you can. For me, if I see the coyote I’m going to run away from it. I’m not saying I can outrun it. I am saying I want to avoid a confrontation if I can.
Tactic: Light up your way or your attacker
Carrying a tactical light even during daylight gives you the advantage of being able to openly carry and wield a strike weapon if attacked. The First Tactical Medium Light is bright and features a sharp crenelated bezel. At dusk or dawn or in the dark the light of course allows you to see and be seen.
Gear: Bond Arms Patriot
When I run I often carry this Bond Arms Patriot, loaded with two .410 shot shells. Yes, this gun is relatively heavy and chunky single action shooter. But even with just two .410 shot shells I can aim, fire, and, with luck, miss my target. And any shot which misses will quickly fall to the ground, harming very little beyond my target. However, if I miss with a 9mm or a .38 Special…
Tactic: Carry a gun, concealed, while running
Few holsters are made for carrying a handgun concealed while running. The Pistol Wear Trump Card, however, can do exactly that — and comfortably so. You’ll hear more about this holster in later review but for now I’ll let you know that I managed a 3-mile run with the Bond Arms Patriot in the Trump Card, carried around my waist.
Thankfully, our neighborhood coyote was nowhere to be found.
How do you defend yourself on the run?
— Mark Kakkuri