There are so many running events being held every week but one special fun event saw people running while pushing strollers with kids inside!
The event, called Run Stroller Run, was held at the Metropolitan Park, in Kepong, Kuala Lumpur earlier this month. The idea for this unique event came up as, according to the organiser Benz Azuri Malik of The Marathon Company (www.themarathoncompany.com), there are many parents who wish to run with their small children.
However, not many running events allow runners to do so, due to safety issues. Some runners even view strollers in running events as a hindrance and do not welcome them.
The fun run event had two categories: Parent or parents with strollers and individuals with no stroller. Both covered a 3.3km route.
I was one of the individual runners who turned up for the event without any stroller as I was there to support my friends who were running with their children. Other individual runners were running together with their family members, so it was a real family-friendly event.
Runners were flagged-off at 7.30am after a warm-up session by a local celebrity, Atilia Haron. The individual category runners started first, followed by runners with strollers a few minutes later. This was to allow individuals to run without being blocked by strollers.
More than 200 strollers made their way around the hilly park that day. A few runners who were pushing their strollers were quite fast and strong and even managed to pass many of the individual runners.
For safety, children had to be securely fastened in the stroller and parents, of course, had to grip the stroller handles properly.
Both adults and children were served isotonic drinks at one water station around the KM1.5 mark and there was also a candies station at the KM2 mark.
Apart from the 3.3km run, runners were also treated with a zumba session. For children under 12, there was a colouring contest. A long queue formed as parents and children waited patiently for their animal balloons sculpted by the event’s clown.
Creatively decked strollers were given prizes too. There was even a bat-mobile stroller making its appearance! The organisers had also prepared generous lucky draw prizes for runners. Many opted to stay back after the run in the hope of winning prizes that included Ice Watches, Mamours baby car seats and strollers, iPhones and other baby products.
It was a fun morning out, enjoying the fresh morning air, and it was great to see families running together.
There will be another family-friendly race in Cyberjaya called the myBuddiesRun (www.mybuddiesrun.my) on Dec 20. There will be a 10km competitive category and masked fun runs for adults and children.
The second-place finisher of the stroller category, MJ (or Mazhairul Jamaluddin), who is also an ultra-marathoner, said pushing a stroller is a good workout for the upper body especially the chest and shoulders.
His tips for running with strollers and tackling an undulating route are:
– Get a stroller with good suspension to ensure the child’s comfort
– Ensure the child is fed before a run so that they won’t get cranky
– Be alert of your surroundings so that you won’t accidentally bump into other runners
– While running on a flat route, he normally uses one hand to push the stroller as it is easier to manoeuvre this way
– When going uphill, he uses both hands to push the stroller as extra effort is needed;
– Going downhill, he makes sure he has a good grip on the handle
– For extra safety, he also wears a pair of workout gloves for better grip as hands can get sweaty while running
– When going at a fast pace, he runs beside the stroller to ensure that he doesn’t accidentally bump into the wheels or the stroller itself.