I think any runner who becomes pregnant dreams about stroller runs with their little. Just trotting along with their mini-me giggling at the birds and staring up at them. I loved living in this ignorant bliss while pregnant. We’re 7 months in and Rowan is just now enjoying the ride more than she protests.
Before I dive into our experience, I’ll share our setup. I’ll be honest in the fact that I didn’t do a ton of research on jogging strollers. I knew the brand I wanted and went from there. Before we even considered having kids, I knew I wanted a BOB. Maybe it’s because they’re in almost every running/bike shop or because thats what my friends had, but it’s the only brand we looked at. Needless to say, I can’t really share comparisons with you of other brands, but if you check out @thesemotherscanrun on Instagram, you’ll find a whole community of runner moms with different strollers.
We chose the BOB Revolution FLEX Jogging Stroller.
Why did we chose this?
The feature that stood out the most to us was the adjustable handlebar. Since my husband and I will both be running with the stroller, we wanted to be able to change the height of the handlebar for each of us. I am 5’5” and he’s 5’11” and this makes for a more comfortable run.
The Revolution PRO also has the adjustable handlebar with added handbrakes. This seems like a really nice bonus and I think it would be great if you’re constantly running super hilly routes with some steep downhills. However, we have some hills in Waco and the thought of having handbrakes never crossed my mind. So for us, it seems unnecessary and I’m glad we didn’t spend the extra money.
Other features: (some of these features may be shared with other strollers in their line)
One feature I love about our stroller is the front wheel that either locks or swivels. You lock the wheel when running which actually makes it a ton easier and safer. You let the wheel freely swivel when just out on a walk. Turning corners with a locked wheel takes some practice, but you just pop a mini-wheely and go. The stroller is also like a skateboard in the sense that if you lean in (or guide it with your hand) a certain direction, the wheels will follow.
The seat for your child to sit in reclines which is great for stroller naps or sitting upright for snacking.
In one swift motion, the stroller is super easy to collapse and store in your trunk. I drive a Subaru Forrester and it fits easily in the back with plenty of extra room.
We added a few accessories to our stroller. The Handlebar Console with Tire Pump, Infant Car Seat Adapter for Chicco, Sun Shield, and Weather Shield. The console is a must have for water bottles, car keys, your phone, toys, gloves, and baby socks that have been kicked off. I also plan on getting a Snack Tray for when she’s a bit older and can have snacks on the go.
When can you run with your baby in the stroller?
You can find product instructions and guidelines for stroller walking/running with your baby from the BOB manual here. Talk with your physician on their opinion and advice. Your babies health and safety are far more important than your training run.
BOB makes a car seat adapter which allows you to place your baby’s car seat in the stroller. We started walking with her in the stroller at 2 weeks and used the adapter for the first 3-4 months (walking only). Around 4 months I sat Rowan in the stroller without the car seat and went on an extremely slow walk to test it out. We continued only walking until 5 months when I had to walk/run home because she was not happy. This was a great introduction into stroller running. Closer to 6 months, I felt she was really sturdy in the stroller with great head and neck control. At this point, I felt comfortable so we started running. Disclaimer: This is our personal experience and I am not suggesting you do what we did. Again, talk with your doctor and refer to the BOB manual.
Does Rowan like the stroller?
Well. Yes. And then no. Then a little. And now pretty much. When she was an infant, she’d sleep for hours in her car seat while I walked, but that was just the infant phase of babies sleeping all the time. As she got a little older and wasn’t sleeping as much, she would tolerate it a little and then scream until I held her. There were plenty of stroller walks where I ended up carrying her for over a mile home. When we started stroller running, she’d be happy for about 30 minutes if she was awake and then protest.
Now, at 7 months, she’s nornally happy or asleep. If I can time it just right (not overtired), she’ll nap for 20-40 minutes in the stroller. This is ideal for long runs. There have been several runs where she’s cried for an hour and I feel like the most selfish mom in the world. In my defense, it’s been an out-and-back route so running is the fastest way to get us back to the car AND I know she is on the verge of sleep but just fighting it. I’ve had to stop and nurse her on curbs and park benches to try and calm her and get her to nap. So not all of our long runs are pretty, but some are great!! It’s hit and miss but we’re improving.
Our longest stroller run has been 13.1 miles. And here’s how it went. Happy for mile 1. Cried mile 2-6 with one stop to calm her. Nursed her at the car and hoped she’d fall asleep. Cried mile 7-8 with one stop. Slept mile 8-12 (when run was supposed to end). Still asleep until 13.1 but I was tired. Woke up when I stopped.
I hear stroller running gets easier when babies can entertain themselves or you can give them snacks. I also assume it becomes more challenging as they grow and are heavier. Although the wind and hills have been huge factors to slow us down, I feel like running with the stroller is a decently smooth ride. It’s definitely different than running without a stroller but I also think it makes you stronger. I’ve actually come to enjoy my stroller runs more than the few times I’ve been able to run solo. There’s just something about running with a stroller that makes you feel hardcore and awesome!!
In summary, this is what we bought:
If I could do it all over again, I’d buy the same stroller and accessories. We’ve been very pleased with the product and customer service.