National Stroller Running Day celebrates on-the-go fitness with kids

There is a population of vehicles growing on the roads – parents running with strollers – as more parents realize that some of the best workouts can be with tots in tow.

Courtesy of Ian Keough
The author finishes the 2013 Norfolk Freedom Marathon with her son in the stroller.

Honk if this scene sounds familiar. It’s early morning, and you drive to a four-way stop sign and check for traffic. You pause as a woman running with a double-wide stroller loaded with two kids, ranging in age from 6 months to 6 years, passes you and gives a wave. 

Not only are you sitting comfortably in a car as she passes, but perhaps you haven’t even made it to the gym yet today, so you might feel a slight pang of envy, or perhaps a smidge of guilt, as you watch this super athlete pass your car. 

Saturday is the first-ever National Stroller Running Day, started by a fitness visionaries who themselves have pushed tots on the go – among them Katie McFarland from Moms Little Running Buddies, BOB brand strollers, the group Moms In Training, Lara Coffee from Run Stroller Run, and Lisa Druxman of FIT4MOM  (Full disclosure, I'm a FIT4MOM instructor).

The day is meant to encourage parents who take their kids with them for runs. According to Running USA, recreational running in the US has grown exponentially since the 1990s, when roughly 4.5 million people finished road races, compared with more than 19 million finishers in 2013.

While that is still only a sliver of the US population, it is growing. And along with it, the presence of both women runners ticking off miles while pregnant and parents running after baby arrives, with the help of a running stroller.

For many parents, moms in particular, having a baby can put fitness plans on hold. Increasingly that no longer has to be the case with more stroller manufacturers building strollers specific to running, and postpartum fitness groups becoming more available.

It has been almost a year since I completed my first marathon pushing a stroller. It was a special chance to celebrate and commemorate the first months of motherhood (my son was almost a year old at the time) and push myself as an athlete. He enjoyed a 26.2 mile tour of our city in the stroller while I chugged away the miles behind him pushing his chariot. I packed enough snacks and toys to pass the time, and he even earned the distinct privilege of saying he has napped in the middle of a marathon!

For those parents intrigued by the idea of taking their little ones along for a workout (no marathons required!), an online search for “jogging strollers” will provide resources for serious athletes and weekend warriors  who are interested in finding a strollers with larger rear wheels and a locking front tire for more stability and safety to run on the road and off. 

Parents can also look for stroller divisions for shorter road races in their area, or groups like FIT4MOM, a national program with franchises around the country, that specifically offers fitness classes for moms with strollers.

To celebrate National Stroller Running Day, visit Twitter to find all of the parents hitting the road with strollers, and posting their pictures with the #strollerun14 tag. Who knows, you might just find that inspiration you need to leave the car behind and join that mom with the double wide stroller.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to

QR Code to National Stroller Running Day celebrates on-the-go fitness with kids
Read this article in
QR Code to Subscription page
Start your subscription today