This is part of a series of posts answering the oft asked question, “Why Do You Joggle?“
Of the 24 marathons I’ve done, only 2 were done sans joggling. Actually, it would’ve only been 1 but in the 1998 Chicago Marathon I dropped two joggling bags in the first half mile and was unable to retrieve them. What a mess.
What I did realize in the non-joggling marathons was that running without juggling is tough. It is so easy to lose focus and start to listen to the negative speak of your tired homunculus. Miles 20 – 24 are particularly difficult if you have nothing to keep your mind off the pain.
Joggling can make you a better runner in the following ways.
1. It forces you to focus. The task of keeping the balls deftly floating in the air keeps your mind focused. You forget pain, exhaustion, and dehydration. There is only the balls and your will to keep them off the ground.
2. It helps you keep good form. One thing that commonly happens to runners when they get tired is they start to slouch. They put their heads down and don’t pump their arms enough. When you’re joggling, you can’t look at the ground. Your head stays straight & your form is disciplined.
3. It generates more crowd comments. You get no greater boost during a marathon than when a huge crowd of people loudly cheer for you. As a joggler, you get more than your fair share of comments and cheers. This extra energy boost makes running a marathon (or any other race) much easier.
I joggle because it makes me a better runner.