CHICAGO (CBS) — The woman jogger who was attacked last week on the lakefront in broad daylight says her strenuous efforts to fight back probably saved her from being sexually assaulted.

The 30-year-old woman – who asked that CBS 2 not reveal her identity – says she was running along the bike path at 35th and the lakefront around 2 p.m. Friday when she stopped near the basketball court to catch her breath. 

“I thought this was just a young man playing basketball,” she told reporter Suzanne Le Mignot on Thursday. “I mean, I let my guard down by turning my back to the basketball court. He literally attacked me in like five seconds.”

The next thing she knew, the man started choking her and put her in what she calls a sleeper hold.

“I think I blacked out, because the next thing I remember I was being dragged by my wrists,” toward the lake, she recalls.

“Then I came back, had a sudden burst of adrenalin, twisted my body over, and we were looking at each other.  We were tussling and tussling.”

When he grabbed her again, the woman said she got loose and ran to Lake Shore Drive.

The woman says her first instinct was to fight back. Her natural athletic ability and strength probably saved her, she says.

“I’m definitely blessed.  I don’t know what came over me and I just jumped into action,” she says. “I think he was trying to sexually assault me because he was dragging me.”

Her attacker ended up with a lot of scratches on his forearms, she says.

She describes her attacker as an African-American man of about 20 years of age. He had a dark complexion and was wearing baby blue boxer shorts with blue jeans.

Her advice to other women is to take a self-defense class.

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