With isolation on the rise and lockdown in effect, British runners have been taking to the streets twice a day to run. The double is usually a nuisance for runners, but an effective way to get extra mileage in. However, right now, doubling is technically in violation of the government lockdown rules, which only allow leaving the home for exercise once a day. And subsequently, running many miles has never been more attractive to those who enjoy exercise.
The new rules say that people can do “one form of exercise a day, for example a run, walk or cycle–alone or with members of your household.” The length of exercise wasn’t specified, although the BBC reported that Cabinet Minister Michael Gove said on Tuesday, “People can go for the standard length of run or walk that they ordinarily would have done. But… the important thing is, once a day.”
According to the BBC, neighbourhood watch is on high alert, as the Northamptonshire Police (just outside of Cambridge) received dozens of calls from locals reporting people running twice a day. Police officer Nick Adderley told the BBC, “We are getting calls from people who say ‘I think my neighbour is going out on a second run–I want you to come and arrest them’. We have had dozens and dozens of these calls.”
(Side note: In different times, there are many runners who would’ve loved to use the excuse of ‘possibly getting fined by police’ to avoid their second run of the day.)
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While the police are within their rights to give fines to those breaking the rules, citizens are urged to “exercise caution” before reporting.
Chicago mayor urges people to avoid long runs
On Thursday Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot asked runners to avoid long runs or bike rides as well. She said: “Outside is for a brief respite, not for 5Ks.”
Thankfully outdoor exercise hasn’t been limited yet in Canada, however, runners are asked to remain two metres from one another and run solo, or with someone they live with.