WOMEN who claim to be routinely harassed while running alone have rallied in support of a fellow female jogger who said she had been chased by a ‘predatory man’.

Hundreds of emotional messages of support were sent to a young woman who shared her horrific experience as a solo jogger.

In a lengthy post on Facebook Grace Chapman, who lives in Oxford, described how she was chased by a 'dangerous predatory man in his 30s' on Saturday.

Ms Chapman was running along an isolated stretch of the canal in Oxford when a man, who she did not know, tried to ask her whether she had seen a 'brown dog'.

Describing what happened next the woman said: "He glanced behind him to check who was coming and started towards me.

"He tried to stop me, asking if I had seen a brown dog.

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"I then ran and he chased me – at a pace.

"Thank god for adrenaline, I have never run so fast in my life and eventually I lost him."

Ms Chapman described him as 'slim, bald and 5'10' height' in her post but also in a poster she pinned at the spot where he approached her to alert other women.

Explaining how this incident made her feel she added: "It was sudden, opportunistic and terrifying.

"I have to work through this, he is unchanged."

Since Ms Chapman published her message on Sunday, the post has received more than 800 comments.

While some criticised her for sharing this 'made up tale' publicly, her story received a lot of support.

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One fellow jogger Denise Corby commented on Facebook: "Sadly, as a female runner this risk assessment is a daily part of my routine.

"I am so pleased that you are safe but so angry we have to experience this whilst enjoying our leisure pursuits.

"Thank you for the post and the awareness for others spread via posters."

Another woman Mavourneen Moore said: "You were right to trust your instinct and realise you were in danger.

"I always carry a personal alarm, just in case as I experienced a similar incident a number of years ago."

Advising women how to protect themselves Ms Chapman urged them to 'trust their instincts, do not try to be polite, do not doubt yourself afterwards and always report to the police'.

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She also explained what men can do to make female runners feel safe: "Have some awareness of how women runners feel out alone.

"Clock when it is just you and them on a narrow path and make space.

"Do the little things that can re-assure, it is not just our responsibility to feel safe.

"Catcalling, intimidation, harassment, the threat of being attacked – female runners have to run with this every day."

While some Facebook users disagreed strongly with Ms Chapman and even argued she 'misunderstood' the man's intentions, a survey conducted by Runner's World showed that 46.5 per cent of women reported that they at least sometimes experience harassment during their run.

The research also showed that just 9.2 per cent of men reported being harassed.

Thames Valley Police confirmed the incident was reported and urged anyone with information to call 101 quoting reference 43200294906.