Running is one of my favorite ways to exercise. Why?
- You can do it anywhere.
- It doesn’t require any special equipment.
- You can enjoy the quiet, and be alone with your thoughts.
Alas, that all changes when you add a running stroller, and, oh yeah, a baby, to the mix. Why?
- The running stroller is pretty durable, but I don’t think W would appreciate “off-roading”and all the bumpiness that would ensue.
- Well, at least one of your hands is tied up holding onto the stroller. Don’t forget the toys and snacks and water and diapers and all the other stuff babies require.
- It may not be all peace and quiet with a baby along, and you most certainly won’t be alone with your thoughts (the thoughts, I hope this stroller doesn’t go flying into the street, and, where is all this wind coming from? usually compete for time in my head)
- Don’t forget the difficulty level increases dramatically when you add a baby and the slightest amount breeze. It’s amazing how much you use your arms while running!
Despite my reluctance to use the running stroller, I decided to take W out for a run around our new neighborhood in the suburbs.
Let’s just say, it was definitely a new experience!
Over the course of our embarrassingly short run (I guess the suburbs didn’t change my attitude towards running with the stroller), I noticed a difference between running in the city verses running in the suburbs.
Running in the City vs. Running in the Suburbs
- Ease of getting started: In the city, it was quite a process getting our running stroller out onto the sidewalk. I had to unlatch the shared front doors so the stroller could fit through, balance the stroller on the top step, re-latch the door, then carry the baby and the stroller down the steps. I always seemed to be sweating before I even started my run! At our new place, I simply plopped W in the stroller out in the garage and headed out the door. Score: City 0, Suburbs 1.
- Ease of running: Streetlights are the bane of a runner’s existence. You are in a groove, running along, when BAM! red light stops you in your tracks. Should you keep prancing about in place looking absolutely ridiculous? Or, should you take a rest and risk looking like a slacker? No streetlights to worry about in a neighborhood! Score: City 0, Suburbs 2.
- The view: Sorry ‘burbs. This isn’t even a contest. Cityscape > rows and rows of houses. Score: City 1, Suburbs 2.
- Variety of run: There are so many running paths and trails to choose from in Philadelphia. Kelly Drive! Ben Franklin Bridge! Forbidden Drive! (Here’s a list of the best paths to run in Philly) I would have to get in my car if I ever want a change of scenery in the suburbs. Score: City 2, Suburbs 2.
- Fellow runners & passerby’s: I was confused when the first few neighbors started waving and saying hello to me during our run in the suburbs. I thought, do I know them? Oh! Maybe they have read the blog! I couldn’t help but be mildly disappointed when I realized that they were just being friendly. In the city, on the other hand, it would be way too much to stop and wave and say hello at all the many runners. I would have had to keep my hand up at all times if I wanted to wave to every passerby. Score: City 2, Suburbs 3
Final score: City 2, Suburbs 3
Overall, there are pluses and minuses to both running in the city and the suburbs. Though, the ease of getting out the door in our new place is enough to make me stay. While I loved the sites, sounds and variety of the city, the quiet, yet friendly atmosphere of the suburbs is appealing to me more and more.
To be honest, I was very hesitant about leaving the city (Read about our move and 5 Ways to Make Moving Easier with Baby). Yet, as I collapsed into the grass of our very own yard and glanced over at W smiling away, I thought to myself,
I think I’m going to like it in the ‘burbs after all.
Don’t forget to check out another workout you can do with your stroller- The Stroller Ab Workout!
So, who’s with me? Who prefers running/walking in the suburbs over the city? Does anyone actually like running with the stroller? Anyone run in the country? Let me know in the comments below!
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