Going for the Joggler: Running-While-Juggling Champ Aims for ‘Joggling’ World Record in Chicago Marathon
TORONTO – SEPTEMBER 29, 2016 – Michal “The Joggler” Kapral of Toronto, Canada, will toss and catch his way through all 26.2 miles of the Bank of America Chicago Marathon on Sunday, October 9, in a bid to break his own record of 2 hours 50 minutes and 12 seconds for the fastest marathon while juggling three objects.
Kapral, 44, took up the niche sport of “joggling” (jogging while juggling) in 2005, when he first set the Guinness World Record for the joggling marathon in Toronto as a stunt to raise money for charity. He quickly became addicted to the harmony between the cascade juggling pattern and the running stride, and spent the next three years in a back-and-forth battle for marathon joggling title with American rival Zach Warren. Kapral eventually set the current mark at the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon in 2007.
Kapral’s joggling feats recently earned him a role as himself, billed as the “fastest marathon juggler,” in the currently running national TV commercial for Fairfield Inn and Suites by Marriott. Fairfield is sponsoring Kapral’s Chicago record attempt to support the hotel chain’s #StayAmazing campaign.
“A lot of people who saw the commercial just can’t believe that running a marathon while juggling is a real thing, or that there is any competition,” Kapral says. “I look forward to showcasing this weird and awesome sport in Chicago – and hopefully setting a world record as well.”
To break his 2007 record, Kapral will have to run every step of the 26.2-mile race while simultaneously juggling three beanbags every step of the way at a pace of under 6 minutes and 30 seconds per mile, or more than eight consecutive 20-minute 5Ks. The race will involve more than 50,000 tosses and catches. If Kapral drops a ball, the official rules say he must return to behind the drop point before continuing. He also needs to come to a complete stop to drink water or Gatorade, so that he juggles every step forward.
“I’ve done a bunch of drop-free long training runs, so I’m ready to joggle up a storm in one of the world’s greatest marathons,” Kapral says. “But my main goal is to get people smiling and maybe inspire them to look at the world in a different way and do something out of the ordinary.”
A father of two daughters, and a writer for a government health agency in Toronto, Kapral calls joggling “the perfect metaphor for life.” To push the multitasking up another notch, Kapral also plans to chew gum throughout the joggling marathon in Chicago.
To other marathon runners who might be peeved that he is running while juggling at or faster than their pace, Kapral says: “Don’t worry, I’m probably hurting more than you are. In the last miles of a joggling marathon, I often think to myself, ‘How can something so silly be so painful?’”
Kapral won’t be the only joggler in Chicago. Local joggling veteran Perry Romanowski also plans to take part in the race.
Chicago will be Kapral’s seventh joggling marathon and his 33rd marathon in total. He has a non-juggling marathon best time of 2 hours 30 minutes and 40 seconds, when he won the Toronto Marathon in 2002. He also holds the Guinness World Records for fastest joggling half-marathon in 1 hour 20 minutes and 40 seconds, set in 2014, and the fasting joggling 10K in 36 minutes and 27 seconds, from 2008. In 2004, Kapral set his first Guinness World Record, for fastest marathon pushing a stroller, in 2 hours 49 minutes and 47 seconds, with his then 1.5-year-old daughter Annika in tow.
Kapral chronicles his joggling experiences on his blog, The Bloggling Joggler, at http://www.thejoggler.blogspot.com.
For more information, high-resolution images, or to book an interview, contact Michal Kapral: