People Are Revealing The Scariest Situations They've Faced While Out For A Run

List Rules

Vote up the scariest stories.

Running may be a great way to stay in shape, but it isn't exactly a safe activity to do alone. These stories directly from runners reveal the true horrors they've encountered when trying to go for a simple run. 

Some posts have been edited for length and clarity. All posts come courtesy of this thread and this thread.


  • 1
    334 VOTES

    Backed Into A Corner

    From Redditor u/MysteriouScan6405:

    I run in a city and choose to run at the worst times of day, but I’ve only ever had one encounter in my life and it was pretty bad. 

    I turned the block around mile 2 at around 10:00p.m. crossed 2 more blocks and heard a couple dudes behind me. I look behind me and there were 2 guys walking behind me and then I turn forward and I see 2 more in front of me. Before I could attempt to maneuver away, the 2 dudes charged me and the other 2 dudes behind me came up too. 

    I’ve done years of competitive jiu-jitsu and muay thai, but that probably wouldn’t help me much in that situation, so I just uncorked my elbows and swung as hard as I could until I had enough time to get on my feet and run away. 

    I don’t run with any valuables, so I didn’t lose anything. Thankfully 1. I’m a runner and I’m pretty good at it and 2. my elbow probably broke someones nose because I found blood on my shirt back at my apartment.

  • 2
    290 VOTES

    Running For Her Life

    From Redditor u/ButtermilkRusk:

    Two guys pulled up onto the sidewalk in front on me in a car and the passenger got out of the car. I knew immediately it was an abduction attempt and ran, literally for my life. 

    Reported to the police who said I did the right thing and confirmed my suspicion. For context it was a safe neighbourhood, less than a mile from my home, after sunrise. But I live in South Africa and suspicious activity is a concern, even in safe neighbourhoods. Runners all have at least one horror story. 

    As a woman I have a few but that’s the one I will ever forget. My blood ran cold and that feeling will always stay with me. I always run during daylight or on a treadmill or in groups. Vigilance is the thing that saved my life I reckon.

  • 3
    276 VOTES

    Followed By A Stranger

    From Redditor u/sportyseapig:

    I was followed while on a run on some super rural roads. 

    I realized that this one car had passed me three times within a span of ~2 miles. Luckily there was a house nearby so I sprinted there and hung out with the electrician while I waited for a friend to pick me up.

    I later reported the incident to the local police and my college's public safety. Public safety asked me what I was wearing. The local police contacted the driver (I had a photo of the license plate) and told him to not do that. 

    So maybe the real scary part was the lack of consequences.

  • 4
    322 VOTES

    Running A Marathon

    From Redditor u/NineNineOhFour:

    Scariest unknown sitch: running the Boston Marathon when the bombs went off. 

    I was at mile 25 and we had no idea what was going on, my pregnant sister was waiting for me near the finish line, I was the only person around me with a phone so I was just passing my phone around so people could call loved ones, we were stopped, we were told we would loop around, finish on a different street, finally a cop just yelled "your race is over get the f*ck out of town".

  • 5
    321 VOTES

    Caught Him By Surprise

    From Redditor u/Vinca828:

    Years ago, I was running in the middle of Seattle at 3:30 in the middle of the day. Lots of people, in full daylight. 

    I noticed a guy about a block away walking towards me and he starts whistling and cat calling me. I ignore him, but as we pass each other, he licks his hand and acts like he’s going to slap me. Then with the other hand he tries to grab my arm. 

    Unfortunately for him, I was an amateur boxer for years and I punched him hard enough to knock him down. I sprinted to my bank and called my husband to pick me up. The boldness was what surprised me.

  • 6
    329 VOTES

    Footsteps In The Distance

    From Redditor u/ZoSo1303:

    I was running on a trail near my house through about a block or two of slightly wooded area. I kept hearing footsteps in the distance behind me, but assumed it was just another runner. 

    The footsteps kept getting closer and closer, so I tried to move to the side a bit more and picked up the pace. All of a sudden the footsteps were directly behind me, so I turned around and saw this man's face literally inches away from mine. He held up his hands and took off in the other direction.

    To this day I have no idea what he was doing, or what, if anything, would've happened if I hadn't turned around at that exact moment. But I avoided the area for a while after that, and carried pepper spray when I did start running on that part of the trail again.