Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Answers for Aerobars

I did a great run around Lake Mercer that has roller coaster ups and downs plus a slalom-through-trees part to put the new Healthy Handles through their paces.

1. It is January, so we'll have to wait a couple months to find out about the dripping sweat issue.

2. I tried to really pay attention to this one. I found that I do better with this than I realized. The real bending at the waist comes when walking up a hill. Generally the hills I can jog up are still steep enough that the stroller is already above me, so using the Healthy Handles in a position above my handle bar made them shoulder-level. I don't want to dismiss different as bad. I generally hate change, but I am aware of this personality "quirk". It sort of is equivalent to the difference between a seated chest press and an inclined chest press.

3. It is nice to have >2 options (i.e. top or side). Like how you can get tired of always holding your bike handlebars in the same place.

4. I have not tried the Healthy Handles on my single Kelty yet. I think that they are not compatible. The Kelty handle bar is already split and at angles.

5. With the Healthy Handles above my handlebar my elbows are bent to less than 90 deg. I'm not sure that this tighter arm position is either better or worse. It is like "The Flying Scotsman" .

Overall, I definitely think that these are AWESOME for anyone over about 5'10" AND anyone who struggles to turn their stroller. The longer lever arm is perfect for that. My Dreamer Design is already incredibly easy to turn, but unfortunately for you, that company has gone out of business.

I am going to experiment with some inside-the-handlebar positions next.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Aerobars For My Stroller

I recently learned about "Healthy Handles" which attach to your jogging stroller. I am totally psyched to try them out. I think these could really help all the 6-ish foot tall dads trying to run with a stroller too. I already try to run with a light touch and I am not all that tall, but I am wondering, will these solve any of these problems:

1. When it is really hot out, sweat drips off my elbows, but since my husband is taller, it runs down his forearms and slimes up the stroller's handlebar.

2. Flats and downhills are fine, but I am bent over at the waist going up hill.

3. My left pointer-finger knuckle is stressed from generally holding my handlebar palms-down.

4. My single stroller doesn't really track in a straight line.

5. It is frustrating when my shoulders fatigue before my legs.

Check back to see how it goes!

Friday, January 15, 2010

How to Run with a Jogging Stroller...

...when you're not the one pushing it!

My husband's flexible work schedule allows for us to occasionally run together with the double stroller while my oldest is at school. I've joked in the past about who gets to push the stroller since we are basically the same speed. Recently we've just been splitting it first/second half. It certainly takes practice to push the stroller for miles, but there are also some tips for the person running alongside.

1. Let the person pushing the stroller be the pacer. This is easy going uphill when it would obviously be very obnoxious to go ahead. It can be frustrating when the stroller speeds past you downhill, but it is very hard to go any slower on a steep hill so let them get a little money in the bank and you'll catch up easily when things level out.

2. Run on the left if you are on a path. This allows the stroller to stay right at a relatively constant pace. On the left, you can easily drop back if someone is coming from the other direction and then come back up again. If you are on the streets, do the same on the right (i.e. the traffic side).

3. Don't dive in to give the kids stuff or make adjustments that require stopping without consulting the "pusher" first.

4. Don't grab the handlebar to "help" push uphill without asking first.

5. Don't cut over curbs and corners that the stroller has to go around...and then stand there like, "Hey - what's taking YOU so long?"

Anything else that helps you?

Monday, January 4, 2010

Crazy Is As Crazy Does

Two independent things have crossed my path which I find humorous (in addition to MORE fallen trees).

First - random, possibly automatically generated email from, http://www.easydogstrollers.com

Second - an article, "Unexpected Upsides" by Marc Parent in January 2010 Runner's World. I quote, "The nonrunner sees the runner as a one-dimensional animal. From the perspective of a couch or car seat or park bench, the runner is simply a person who runs. After a little more thought, the description may change but only slightly - runners are seen as either fit or insane or, how I'd always thought of them, both. When pressed, nonrunner may expand their idea of what a runner is, but the perspective remains primitive - the runner is a person who is fit, insane, and really tired."

I have to admit that I scoffed at the idea of putting one's dog in a stroller for a run, but then I wondered whether nonrunners or childless runners think I am just as crazy for pushing two kids on three wheels all over town. In short, I am crazy. Our last two runs were in 24 deg. F weather. I'm well on my way to rock hard! And I guess I'm a little tired too...

So if you are crazy for your dogs (I'm thinking "Best In Show" crazy), you're set.