Eilish McColgan: British 5000m record holder says she’s wary to run after dark

Eilish McColgan

British runner Eilish McColgan says she’d be “wary” of doing training runs in the dark.

McColgan, who is Britain’s 5000m record holder, spoke about how the murder of Sarah Everard in March has reinforced her stance on running late at night.

Fellow distance runner Charlotte Purdue, who was the first British woman to finish at the London Marathon on Sunday, described similar feelings last week.

"I personally only really run in places that are well populated and in the day," Purdue said.

"I don't really run late at night or through empty parks or stuff like that. I hadn't really thought about it too much before this whole situation but I definitely have to think about it a lot more.

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“I run on the treadmill now when it's dark and in the winter because it's a lot safer. In the day, I do feel safe running outside by myself.”

Asked what could be done to make life better for women in these situations, Purdue said: "I don't know what really could be done. I don't know what you could do to help that. I'd say more streetlights, and CCTV cameras, stuff like that would help. People have to make their own decision about if they feel safe or not if they run.”

McColgan echoed these thoughts and said: “I’d be very hesitant about running in the dark. It will be the same for women all across the world.”

The 2018 European Championships silver medallist added: “I'm in the fortunate position of being a professional athlete and being able to train 24 hours a day. My partner actually cycles along with me most days so I never really feel unsafe.”

Eilish McColgan

"I can choose my times but other women can't do that. We travel all over the world so there are always going to be places you are a little bit unsure of."

McColgan has represented Britain at three Olympics and reached the women’s 5000m final in 2016.

The Scot also won the 2018 Great South Run in Portsmouth –– clocking a time of 54 minutes and 43 seconds.

This year, she broke the 17-year 5000m British record, previously held by Paula Radcliffe.

The Brit will run at her third Commonwealth Games next summer in Birmingham and aims to compete for 5000m and 10,000m glory.

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