Running while pushing a loaded buggy is more strenuous than any exercise at the YMCA.
It had been a while since I’d taken Millie in the stroller for a jog. In the past, she’d sit quietly while I’d zone out and listen to music. However, her brain underwent inevitable toddler developments and now she expects me to carry on steady stream conversations while pushing her henceforth.
“Mommy, did you see that dog?”…”Mommy?!”…”I said did you see that dog.”
Gasping, “Yes, Millie.”
“Mommy, did you see that it was a small dog?”…[waits three seconds]… “Mommy, DID YOU SEE IT WAS A SMALL DOG?”
“Yes. [wheeze]. Small dog ugh.”
“Mommy, swimming and bed make kind of the same.”
“No, Millie. Swimming and bed do not rhyme.”
“Yes, they do.” (I’m already physically dying on a hill so I won’t fight her on this one.) “Mommy, why is that man riding his bike?” (Really? Like, philosophically speaking? Can I ignore this one too?)…”Mommy!!”
Actually, I’m in worse shape now than when I started at the YMCA. Pushing that stroller today proved it. I used to run effortlessly, but it feels like I haven’t run in months. Oh, but I have! – just not while pushing a loaded stroller.
So, the take home message is this: To improve your workout you need to be pushing a stroller. That’s golden when you have children that are of stroller pushing age, but not to worry. I believe anyone can disguise themselves as a parent these days if done properly.
For example, buy a cheap used jogging stroller online (make sure the front wheels lock or you will get massive turbulence and wheel flutter). Next, fill it with something heavy that will cause you to perspire noticeably even at a moderate pace. Babies work well, but anything remotely resembling the shape of a baby that fits underneath an afghan blanket will do, like bricks. Afghans are great because they look as though there’s a baby sleeping underneath without alarming a nosy passerby (reassuring ‘breathing’ holes).
It would be catastrophic to have someone stop you and instead of your sweet innocent baby, they pinched a watermelon. Keep all strangers at arm’s length. Regarding the afghan, not too ugly as to accidentally attract hipsters, millennials and other loom enthusiasts, but ugly enough to keep all fertile young females away. The older generation will not be fretted by mere afghan ugliness and will require a more specific repelling agent, such as a bad-ass rub-on tattoo. You will be amazed at the invigorating sensations you receive while pushing a ‘sleeping baby’ in a stroller. People will give you looks. The looks will become so repetitive and come with such consistency that you will become an expert at reading people’s thoughts.
You will then start to respond to their thoughts with your own thoughts, ‘That’s right, I don’t rest while my baby sleeps. I run! Bet you don’t run. You just water your garden in the middle of the day. Maybe you used to run or wished you had run while your baby slept. I don’t live with regret, I take action. I am a multi-tasking, buggy-pushing machine! Oh, you’re just staring at my strange tattoo flapping in the wind. That’s okay. Just don’t ask to see my baby and we cool.’