I especially admire the Mother Runners, like Kenya's Edna Kiplagat and our own Kara Goucher. But what I'm wondering is, do they ever run WITH their kids? Cuz lemme tell ya, that would be a REALLY awesome race.
With the huge growth in number of Mother Runners, I think it's time for the Olympics to introduce a new, even more challenging road race. We can still enjoy watching the gorgeous strides and beautiful paces of our Marathoners, but, let's add to it. The time has come to introduce the event of:
Why would Mother Running be even MORE awesome than just...running?Easy: it adds way more challenges to our beloved sport.
Running 10 miles is...yea...tough.
But try doing it with a stroller full of kid and their crap.
Mother Running would be an event filled with excitement! Instead of only waiting (through the commercials) to see if Russia will indeed beat Ethiopia, we'd be on the edge of our seats waiting to see if The United States' Mother Runner's Kid's Sippy Cup empties before the finish line, leading to a full fledged melt down, forcing her to steer the stroller as child flails their body about the stroller, screaming at the top of their lungs for "MORE MILK NOOOOOOOOWWWW!" Will China's Mother Runner forget her kid's snack, leaving him in a hypoglycemic meltdown at mile 5?
My other personal favorite moments of this event would be:
The Olympic Marathoners pretty much just SHOW UP in their underpants at the start line. In Mother Running you can't do that. You've gotta remember not only your kid and their stroller, but also: their favorite pacifier, their favorite blankie, their favorite toy, their sippy cup, their snack, enough diapers, enough wipes, hand sanitizer, an extra binky, cash (because they'll probably lose their snack), a first aid kit (laugh, but hey, you long enough miles with a kid and you need it)....Plus, our own water, gu, Garmins, and...well...whatever!
The Binky Grab
You know how this one works. Your kid is happily riding along, sucking on their favorite pacifier when, suddenly they launch it into the air, laughing out, "ha ha! My binky Mommy!" Not wanting to deal with the fall out from leaving the pacifier on the side of the road, you do the slow down, stroller to the side, duck, grab, and pass to baby move.
I personally perform this move an average of 2.5 times per run. It's a definite.
The Circle Back
At first, there's the "oh shit" moment. Then the "do I HAVE to go back for THAT" where the Mother Runner considers risking not going back. But then remembers what bedtime would be like without blankie. At which point, the Circle Back occurs.
The Pit StopNow, what impressed me most during the Olympic Marathon is how easily these women rehydrate. They hardly miss a beat as they grab their fluids. It's not like the water stops us commoners experience. But let's see how they handle a diaper change along the course. How fast can you change that diaper, in the stroller, and...the trick...RE-FASTEN your child's seat belt (because they think you pulled over for them to get out).
Bonus points to Stroller Mother Runners completing pit stops with Potty Training Toddlers.
The Last Resort