Daily Chatter

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

You know you are a runner when...

...you are house shopping and you google map to find running routes near each house before you agree to go see it!

Yes, that is what I did.  After my birth into the amazing world of ultra trail running (before which I never was truly alive or a runner!), we went to see seven houses in Virginia.  My hubbs is looking at certain he will get a new job in the VA area.  So house shopping we went.  The plan has been for him to first go see loads of houses and slim the list down for the family to go see.  Of course, what better day to do it than the day after my first ultra?!

I loved three of the houses we saw.  Hubbs and I agreed on two of the houses and middle one only liked one.  And I seriously did consider where I would be running.  I am not a runner who likes to drive to some place to run.  I want to walk out my front door and have running options.  Safe running options.  Let's remember that I often run with the jogging stroller so that is a factor in what is safe enough.

Another thing I did was check out the neighbors.  Where our PA home is this is not a concern.  I know nearly everyone who lives within 25 miles of me.  However, I was a bit scared when I checked and saw that there were 47 hits for "predators" in the area around two of the houses.  (versus zero hits at our PA home) 

I do understand that there are people who are convicted or accused of a crime and will never offend again.  I also realize that there are people who were in a situation such as a 20 year old boy who is accused by his 17 year old girlfriend. 

BUT.  That is not what I am worried about. 

I am worried because I won't know which ones to worry about.

This may seem off topic considering I have been all high about my ultra running lately but it really is something I think about.  I am a creature of habit.  "Bad" people use that against you.

So I am looking for some words of advice or wisdom from those of you who have moved and run or have children and have faced these same concerns. 

What did you do prior to choosing a location/house? 
Did you allow the move to change your daily behaviors?
Have you ever google predators in your neighborhood?  Were you surprised by what you learned?

On the running front:  I ran 3.5 this morning (with no concern of crazies).  I made some friends at this trail race and I am already looking forward to finding the next trail race with their experience and guidance.  Running people are just the nicest folks ever!  Oh wait, you are all runners too.  No wonder I like you all so much!

Incase you were wondering about my toenails, I got them drained.  Yeah, I just stuck a needle under the toenail.  Me = crazy or brave?  You choose!


  1. When I move running trails/areas are going to be so vitally important to the decision making process! LOL! I'm righ there with you!

    Now I'm off to read your Ultra report because I am so behind on my reader I haven't had a chance to read it yet!!!

  2. Ha! I would probably check out the running situation before buying too! Smart thinking!
    I have googled the predator list. We have one within about 10 miles of our house, I could care less why or how they got put on the list. When it comes to that, I think it is always best to err on the side of safety. Especially when you have children.

  3. I was concerned about being able to run from my apartment when I moved to my current one. I decided to move to one that didn't have the greatest running paths because it was nicer inside, and I figured I could drive to better running areas. I do regret it some days when I just feel like darting out the door for a quick run. I was sucking it up figuring it was OK during the day, but now that I have googled the sex offenders in my area, I will be running with pepper spray from now on!

  4. Having places close by is important and you can figure that out quickly.

    To check out the area a little more, visit one of the local schools. Ask for a quick tour (explain that you are looking at buying a house in the neighbourhood and children's education is a priority). You can size up any area really quickly by looking at the condition of the school and the behaviour of the students and teachers.

  5. Way to go on your run! I would have never thought about jogging routes when looking for a new house. That is a good point though :-)

  6. I too like to be able to go out my door and run. Good luck with the house hunt!

  7. oh my good ness 47 is ALOT! I definatly look at those websites and also the crime websites but you can also call the local police department explain that you are planning on moving and find out which area's have the lowest crime rates, sometimes the websites can be mis-leading...when we moved to our house and I searched crime in the zip code misdemeanor offenses was off the charts, because I live 2 miles from the mall where they have shoplifting crimes daily...Good luck what part of Virginia I grew up there my whole life!

  8. I live in a really urban area, so there's a pretty high number in my zip code. My neighborhood is generally safe, but I still would never run much after dark by myself and I don't run by myself on the urban trails. That said, I feel completely safe running during the day because there are lots of people around and I'm very aware of my surroundings, precisely because it is an urban area.

    Where in VA are you looking? Will you be anywhere near my neck of the woods (or concrete as the case may be LOL)?

  9. Tough question. I go in spurts of where I worry about being in a car accident and take extra precautions. Then I forget about it and it doesn't worry me. I think once you get to know the area, the neighbors, you'll feel better. You can also carry a cell, get pepper spray, run in the day, etc.

  10. I just moved and your question made me wonder about my neighborhood. There are a number of them in the zip code but none within the immediate area of my house.

  11. I definitely factor the running situation in when house hunting. For us, we were relocated to Richmond and knew we wanted to live in the suburbs. We didn't do enough research the first go round and ended up in a neighborhood we weren't too fond of. So we moved last year into a part of town we were more comfortable with. We loved the schools and location to everything. I say research as much as you can and trust your gut.

  12. For me, good schools are a priority and ability for activities for the kiddos. But it's mandatory that I also live near some great running spots for my own sanity. I pretty much live in suburbia USA but I am close proximity to a large state park loaded with trails where I can feel a bit closer to nature. And the mountains are closeby, too, for some great summer trail running. Maybe one day you can make it out here and run an ultra out here...and drag me along with ya :).

  13. When i get a house someday, I will totally be looking for a safe, well lit area so i can run and not be scared. :)

  14. I think it's smart to be aware of where you are considering moving... not sure how I would handle the predator information, but I can definitely understand your concerns as a mother!

  15. Good job on the run :)
    The last house we bought, we bought in a hurry so no time to look into all of that. The next time though, I will def be in the same boat as you. And you are very smart to be concerned with the people who live around you. You are right to know that consistancy can work against you. Good luck!

  16. Oh man! I hear you! Being a military family we have moved quite a lot. The one thing I have said that I would do for our next move (if it is not back to our house in NC) is to go and live there for 6 months or so to learn the area and find a place that fits our habits, needs, and lifestyle. It is so hard to find a place when you are simply househunting in a new area. I know it is not convenient or easy but I swear next time we move I want to rent a home and settle in the routine and see where the routine takes me. For instance, do all the things you would, run, work out, make friends, work...and see where you are doing most of those things. If they are all over the city then find a central location. If they are in the north end then focus your search on the north end. Or find like minded people, those your hubbs will be working with, runners, and ask them for advice. Moving is hard but you dont' want to be locked into a house just to realize that it is all wrong as far as location.
    I do the predator serach too. Creepy! With kids you just can't be too careful. I hope you all can find something that suits all your needs and is safe too! Good luck!

  17. Another helpful site for looking at house is http://www.walkscore.com/ It rates the neighborhood based on proximity to stores, entertainment, schools, etc.

  18. SO TRUE! When we moved to Miami, one of my key considerations was where can we live that I can go out for a run anytime and feel safe and enjoy it