Julia Webb, whose husband, Alan Webb, owns the American record for the fastest mile, pulled off an achievement worthy of a Guinness World Record—she ran a 38:15 in a 10K run while pushing a “rent-a-baby” in a stroller.
Webb ran in the cold, wind, and rain with 7-month-old Ruby Schares—an infant of some friends—safely tucked away in blankets under a rain cover during the Run Like Hell 10K in Portland, Oregon, according to Runner’s World Newswire and Webb’s blog.
Alan Webb, currently pursuing a professional career in triathlon, set the American record in the mile at 3:46.91 in 2007. With her time, Julia will be the new owner of the Guinness World Record for a 10K while pushing a baby in a stroller, if it is approved. Allison Tai of Canada currently holds the record at 43:07.
After being told by organizers of numerous 10K runs that she couldn’t run with a stroller, she finally found one that would accept her attempt at the record. Only there was a slight problem. She didn’t have a baby for the stroller.
Webb trained while pushing her own 2-year-old daughter, but baby Joanie was “almost 3,000 miles away on a rare trip with dad” and was unavailable for Sunday’s race.
That’s where Stephanie and Eric Schares and their infant daughter come in.
“[Eric] jokingly suggested, ‘Have you ever considered using a lighter baby?’ looking down at Ruby, who was only about 4 months old at the time,” Webb told Runner’s World Newswire.
The idea was hatched over the summer and Webb ran with it, calling it “rent-a-baby.”
“The start was freezing, so Ruby was hidden in the cocoon, and I was still wearing my rain jacket and ear warmers when the gun went off,” Webb wrote on her blog.
“I reassured Ruby’s mama, Steph, that I had a great rain cover and Joanie actually does better running with that because it’s like a little cocoon to protect her from the elements and usually puts her to sleep.”
But Ruby didn’t sleep.
“Wide-eyed Ruby definitely didn’t want to miss out and was far from asleep when I peaked in at her after the finish,” Webb wrote. “Just like our first [practice] run, she took it all in stride, alert, and intensely sucking on her binky, only to pass out from exhaustion once she returned home from her running adventure.”
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