Running with a baby jogger is not ideal, but sometimes necessary. I spent the whole summer after I had my first child running with the baby jogger. We were traveling Europe and I refused to miss out on my running. I logged about 60 miles per week with it and ended up in great shape as a result! It can be difficult to run your normal pace sometimes, and navigating busy streets can be tough. So I’ve put together a few tips for making running with a baby jogger more successful.
TIP #1: LEAVE THE GPS AT HOME
If you are someone who runs with a GPS watch it may be a good idea to turn the GPS portion off or leave the watch at home and just go for time. Running with the jogger usually results in slower miles than desired; if this is something that bothers or frustrates you, you may consider this tip. If it doesn’t bother you, and you are fine with hitting slower miles than normal then be kind to yourself and remember that you are pushing 40+ extra pounds.
TIP #2: FIND A QUIET ROUTE
Stick to roads and neighborhoods that are not busy. Keep in mind that you are not only pushing around a heavy, bulky stroller but also, your child is in the stroller. Running in an area with a lot of cars can be dangerous and it can create stress for not just you but drivers too. You will be much better off if you pick a non busy street. Preferably also a route without hills, which can add another level of stress and can be quite difficult to push a stroller up.
TIP #3: GET COMFORTABLE
Find a position that is comfortable for you. I like to run with one hand on the handle bar because it feels most comfortable for me, however there are times I need both hands on the handle bar for steering purposes. Most strollers also offer a safety wrist strap that allows you to remain connected to the stroller in case it rolls away from you. It is important that you figure out what you are comfortable with and then get used to it. If you are new to running with a stroller it may take a few runs to feel normal, I suggest starting out with short runs and progressing to longer runs once you feel in control.
TIP #4: GET BABY COMFORTABLE
The last and most important tip is to make sure your baby is comfortable for the ride. They should be strapped in tight and correctly, have a full tummy, the proper clothing, blankets if needed and something to look at. If your child is older it is a good idea to pack something for them to look at or play with during the ride. You may encounter some times when your child gets upset and grumpy during the run. I remember some runs when my then 1 or 2 year old would only let me get through my run if she had music on. I would put music on my phone and secure it inside one of the pockets in the stroller and cover it up with a blanket so she could not get it out and throw it mid run.
Sometimes it takes a few tricks, experiments, and a lot of patience but stroller running can be a great success if you take the time to figure out what works for both you and your child.
Annika Braun is a McMillan Running Coach. Learn more about our Personal Coaching where you can train with a coach like Annika by your side to plan your training and talk about race strategy, performance nutrition, injury prevention, stretching, and much more.
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