Photo: Montana Sports
Many a parent has pushed a double stroller through the streets at breakneck speed to make it to circle time for the opening bars of "The Wheels on the Bus." But this past June, one incredible Montana mom took the “jogging stroller” concept to a whole new level by completing the 2019 Missoula full marathon while pushing her three kids (aged six, three and 21 months) in a triple stroller.
Yes, you heard us right. Not only did 35-year-old Cynthia Arnold double up her 2018 distance from half to full marathon (both while pushing a stroller,) but she also crushed the previously held record to nab the unofficial Guinness World Record title for the fastest marathon runner pushing a triple-person stroller. That's right, she trimmed the former record of 4 hours, 6 minutes down to a mind-blowing 3 hours, 11 minutes.
But before you tumble into a shame spiral over your latest fitbit numbers or that lapsed gym membership, keep in mind that the biggest challenge for the former high school track and cross country runner wasn’t completing a full marathon while pushing a carriage that added 185 pounds to her load. Rather, it was—you guessed it— the snacks. In a video clip on YouTube, the runner can be seen handing out freezies to her kids at the 14-mile point while shouting out directions on how to open them.
Record-breaking marathon moms: they’re just like us!
Another concern for the running enthusiast was keeping the kids occupied for the duration of the race. “They’re usually in the stroller more like an hour to an hour and twenty,” says Arnold, “so it was a little over twice as long, so that was going to be a big challenge.” In a stroke of ingenuity, Arnold solicited 6-year-old daughter Marguerite to entertain the troops by reading to them and playing one of their favourite games—I Spy.
Still, in case anyone thinks that running a full marathon while pushing 3 growing kids in a stroller is a breeze, Arnold makes it clear that it was anything but. “The kids are a year heavier, and I was feeling that,” she says. “The stroller felt heavier this year.”
After running with her children for the past two years, Arnold says she plans to leave the kids at home in 2020 and run the race herself—and we'd definitely agree that she’s earned some "me" time!
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