I want to start by saying a huge THANK YOU to all the organizers and participants of SAFE Lexington and their recent 24/7 Run + Walk. SAFE Lexington is a community group located in my hometown of Lexington, SC whose goal is to promote safety among drivers, cyclists, runners, and pedestrians in the area. This recently formed group is definitely needed for the area as safety is more important now than ever with Lexington and the surrounding areas growing immensely. This means more (frequently distracted) drivers on the road without proper infrastructure to ensure the safety of cyclists, runners, and pedestrians.
If I’m being completely honest, I am often afraid to ride my bike (and occasionally run) in the area surrounding my home. I wouldn’t be exaggerating to say it’s the biggest motivator for my travelling and why I’m sometimes less than eager to return home. When we are home, the amount of indoor training I do via stationary bike and treadmill running increases dramatically. While I still enjoy this training, and it’s certainly convenient and effective, my heart always misses the feeling of training outdoors. Over the years my paranoia has only increased with the always present possibility of danger while out on the road. Especially after the birth of our daughter, Charleigh.
I always thought that I should have a more active role in helping promote the safety of cyclists, runners, and pedestrians in my hometown. Considering how many miles I have put on those roads and wanting to grow to be a community leader, it only made sense. But I always neglected the opportunity to start or even join these groups, out of fear that recognizing the danger would only grow my fear. I’m glad that others took that step that I never did with SAFE Lexington. The F3 and FiA groups rallied amazingly after the loss of members John Flanagan and Diane Wells to show their support and demonstrate that safety needs to be a priority in our community.
Last week I witnessed several of my friends participating in the 24/7 Safety Run + Walk that happened just a few miles from our house in the Whiteford neighborhood. The amount of support for the event was astounding with over 8,400 miles completed by over 1,000 participants! This is amazing for me to hear and gives me hope and pride that community is doing it’s best to improve the safety of everybody on the road. I wasn’t able to join with my work being located in Grand Junction, CO currently, but I can’t wait to return home later this year to run my lap!
Once again, THANK YOU to everyone that has had any part in promoting, organizing, or participating in this group and event!