I say pram but I mean super running buggie.... I'll keep this one brief!...
On Sunday I met my friend Leanne and her "baby" (who is growing so fast I think she has become a toddler... but anyway)... Scarlett, who wasn't running with us but would be snoozing (hopefully) in her super-buggy thing... This was one mean machine I have to say... lightweight - with both a hand leash and a brake... I think it was one a bit like this;
Now I had a 8mile base run in my plan and Leanne had a 5 mile - so I went early did my 3 then met Leanne for the next 5. We met at a place called Dinton Pastures which is a lovely country park with a couple of lakes and plenty of paths (mainly non-tarmac) to run around... one of the best things about this place is the coffee shop by the car park - the best home made cakes to give anyone plenty of incentive to get their post workout reward (which was the main reason for us choosing this location!)
So anyway - having done my 3 miles I met up with Leanne and Scarlett and off we trotted. I was well impressed with the buggy - it coped very well with the terrain (mainly dusty and some stony footpaths). Scarlett was soon fast asleep, rocked by nicely by the motion and vibrations and cooling air (it was a very hot morning).... I was also well impressed with Leanne's running with the buggy - one hand alternating on the hand rail to keep it moving (whilst attached via the leash)... we had a couple of inclines at the end of our 2.5mile out which meant a bit more effort mind - so feeling daring, at the turnaround I offered to push for a bit... now you can picture the scene.. I'm now pushing said buggy with toddler passed out in it and Leanne attached via a leash... there was no one getting in our way I have to say!!
Now - having taken control I can say several things about running with a buggy;
1. It was very easy to control - very lightweight and quite manoverable when needed
2. It coped with all the surfaces remarkably well - even potholes weren't a problem
3. Running with it does effect your FORM but I think in a very positive way (you do have to concentrate a bit on the up hills to make sure you don't slouch into a pushing stance though). The shape of the buggy meant it is quite unlikely you will be able to overstride and heel strike... and ... now I don't quite know physiologically why - but it does also give your glutes a really good workout! It's quite common in people who run but who sit all day to get lazy glutes - but BOY oh BOY running with a pram certainly makes them fire.. I found overall my running form improved with the pram - and when I swapped off again I felt like I was running on air.
4. You can't stop whilst running with a pram - the toddler may well wake up - this is not to be recommended!!
... I made it about 2miles into the return leg before I began to struggle a bit (well not only am I not used to running with a buggy I had by now ran 7 miles) - so I handed back the handrail to Leanne (which increased her workout!!) and felt very light and breezy running afterwards....
Scarlett woke up just as we reached the end of our run - we were both knackered - so her encouraging shouting of "more" and "faster".... err was entertaining but frankly not going to happen!! We ended up in the cool garden of the coffee shop; cakes, warm banana and coffee as reward for our outing!
All in all a really enjoyable experience - my butt cheeks are still aching now two days later - just goes to show how weak they are!