Introducing Trail Joggling
I have been running for quite some time now and recently picked up a bit of juggling. I was excited when I learned about joggling which is the combination of both. It’s not as niche as it sounds and surprisingly competitive: The half marathon joggling record is 1:20 hours which is 14 minutes faster than my personal record without juggling!
Since my love for running is not on the roads but on the trail I was eager to combine trail running with juggling. I call it Trail Joggling. If you trust Google, me and just one other lunatic are the only ones to have ever used that term on the entire internet. That’s a niche sport!
For my first time, I picked a familiar trail to train and was relieved by how easy it was, at least compared to what I expected beforehand. With enough care I managed terrain and obstacles just fine. Except for one big hill I was able to joggle through all climbs. That hill is to steep to climb running even without balls. At first I tried walking and juggling but the slope was still too intense. In the end, I stopped juggling and power hiked up that hill, a technique using your hands which is more energy-efficient than running but faster than hiking. As self-proclaimed ambassador for this new sport I should come up with some best-practices for how to handle juggling in these situations.
Trails around me are currently snowed in which made some aspects harder, others easier. I’m excited how I’ll manage trail joggling on clear trails. Exposed rocks, boulders and tree roots on technical trails pose an additional challenge for coordination. I’m also waiting for the first time when I lose a ball by dropping it down a cliff or have to chase it rolling down a steep hill.
Finally, trail joggling seems to be a big crowd pleaser. Fellow hikers on the trail get ecstatic by seeing a crazy dude not only running up trails in winter but also juggling balls while doing so.