Monday, September 25, 2017

NEWS RELEASE: High Five! Juggling Runner Michal Kapral to Attempt 5-Ball Joggling Marathon Guinness World Record in Toronto

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

High Five! Champion Juggling Runner Michal Kapral to Attempt 5-Ball ‘Joggling’ Marathon Guinness World Record in Toronto

Kapral to race Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon juggling 5 beanbags – and chewing gum – to raise funds for SickKids Foundation

TORONTO – Ten years after smashing the current Guinness World Record for fastest marathon while juggling three objects in 2 hours 50 minutes, Toronto’s Michal “The Joggler” Kapral plans to run and juggle his way to a new record, this time keeping five beanbags in the air every step of the 2017 Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon on October 22.

Kapral, 45, a writer at Health Quality Ontario in Toronto, has completed eight three-ball marathons while “joggling” – the sport that combines running (or jogging) and juggling – including the 2016 Chicago Marathon, which he finished without dropping a ball once in 2 hours 55 minutes.

Michal Kapral works on his five-ball joggling at the Toronto Beach
This will be Kapral’s first attempt at a five-ball joggling marathon, and the first time anyone has officially tried to set the Guinness World Record for running an entire 42.2km race while juggling five balls. The only other reported complete five-ball joggling marathon was by the late Billy Gillen of Brooklyn, N.Y., who was rumoured to have joggled the entire 1988 New York City Marathon in 7 hours 7 minutes. Barry Goldmeier of Rockville, Maryland has also joggled five beanbags during marathons, but doesn't juggle the entire way.

Guinness World Records has set a time of 4 hours 40 minutes to establish an official record. An adjudicator will be at the race to verify the record attempt on the spot. Kapral will aim for the 4:40 mark, but has a secondary goal of surpassing Gillen's reported time of 7:07.

“This is by far the most difficult world record I’ve ever attempted,” says Kapral, who also holds Guinness World Records for the fastest half-marathon (1:20:40) and 10K (36:27) while juggling three objects, and previously held the record for fastest marathon pushing a stroller. “Juggling five balls standing still is about 10 times harder than three. Keeping that five-ball pattern flying in the air while running a marathon is just completely nuts. It feels like you’re running two marathons at once – one with your arms and one with your legs.”

Kapral expects to stop or drop several hundred times during the marathon, and has enlisted American joggling rival and friend Zach Warren to run behind him (without juggling) to act as a spotter, and to ensure the safety of the other runners. Despite having to look up at an angle, Kapral is able to see ahead of him while running and juggling with five beanbags. Guinness World Records rules stipulate that if Kapral drops a ball, he must return behind the drop point before restarting. He can stop at aid stations to drink or eat, but must be juggling every step of the way forward.

As he did while setting the 2007 world record while joggling three balls, Kapral will chew gum during the entire five-ball joggling marathon. “People always ask me, ‘Can you also chew gum while you do that?’” Kapral says. “The answer is yes! I’ll be chewing Stride gum the whole way!”

Kapral is raising donations for SickKids Foundation as part of the record attempt, to support patient care, research and equipment at The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, where Kapral received treatment for severe asthma as a child, and where he and his wife Dianne's daughter Annika received care for a heart condition when she was born. Secure donations can be made through this link: https://www.sickkidsdonations.com/registrant/FundraisingPage.aspx?registrationID=3952455&langPref=en-CA.

In another world first, Kapral has likely become the first runner to secure an official cinnamon bun sponsor. Rosen’s Cinnamon Buns, founded by cookbook author Amy Rosen, has endorsed the marathon record attempt.  

“These delectable treats fuelled some of my long training runs,” says Kapral, “so having Rosen’s support for this record attempt is just the icing on the bun.”

Kapral chronicles his joggling experiences on his blog, The Bloggling Joggler, at http://www.thejoggler.blogspot.com.

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For high-resolution images, or for more information, please contact Michal Kapral at joggler1@gmail.com, or @mkapral on Twitter.


Wednesday, August 16, 2017

A Non-Joggling Challenge: GoodLife Fitness City Chase Toronto

Running while juggling tests your fitness and your mind. The GoodLife Fitness City Chase does the same, and that's why I've had my eye on the urban adventure series for years. The events, which take place throughout the summer across Canada in Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa. Halifax and Toronto (two events), culminate in a national final with the best three teams from each of the city finals.

Dianne and I are teaming up to compete in the second Toronto event on August 19. It will feature a series of 10 challenges, and clues to find each of the challenge points. Participants are only allowed to navigate on foot or by public transit. Hopefully, we'll get a chance to do lots of running. They estimate 10k-20k of running and walking, depending on how much you take public transit. I don't plan to do any joggling during the race, unless of course there happens to be a challenge that involves running and juggling. The race has a 6-hour cutoff and the winners typically finish in just over 2 hours. Dianne and I recently returned from a week of back-country camping in Algonquin Park, so we're already in team adventure mode. Let's do this!

Teams that raise certain amounts of money for the event's charity partner, GoodLife Kids Foundation, which provides physical activity opportunities for children with autism, get special advantages, such as early access to clues.

Thanks to the good people at City Chase, you can get a $20 discount to the event through this blog. Just go to the registration page, and plug in the promo code: JOGGLER20.

The as-yet-unnamed but super-awesome team!

Friday, February 17, 2017

Blogiversary: 10 Years of Blogging About Joggling

Most people can't believe that joggling is a real thing that people do. Well, can you believe that I have been writing this blog about joggling for 10 years? Ten years! Exactly a decade ago, I launched The Bloggling Joggler with this post, saying:
"Welcome to the drama, the pain, the heartaches, the headaches, the insanity and the joy that is joggling. This blog will track my journey as I attempt to reclaim the Guinness World Record for 'fastest marathon (26.2 miles) while juggling three objects,' and any future joggling feats."
I never imagined the joggling hilarity that would ensue for the next 10 years.

Some highlights:

2007: Zach Warren and I faced off in a joggling duel at the Salt Lake City Marathon. We were featured in a CBC News documentary and the feature documentary, Breaking and Entering, by the amazing Benjamin Fingerhut.



2008: I chased after the joggling 5000m world record, falling just a few seconds short. I joggled the Cayman Islands Half-Marathon. I became, I think, the first person to joggle in the Northwest Territories, joggling the first few hundred metres of the Rock and Ice Ultra 135km race near Yellowknife.

2009: I appeared on MTV Canada, joggling onto the stage to the Rocky theme song. I joggled the World's Best 10K in Puerto Rico. I set the half-marathon joggling record of 1:24 in Montreal.

2010: The film Breaking and Entering released to rave reviews from Variety and New York Times.



2011: Tried to break the 5000m joggling Guinness World Record of 16:55 again, and missed out again by about 10 seconds. This is a tough one.

2012: Joggled the Chilly Half-Marathon in Burlington with a GoPro on my head. In October, I became the first person to win a marathon while juggling, joggling a 2:59 at the Trapline Marathon in Labrador. Beautiful race course.

joggling michal kapral
Joggling the Chilly Half-Marathon in Burlington, Ont.

2013: I made two attempts at the world record for the joggling 800m (2:12:45) and missed out the first time after a drop and the second time finishing in 2:15.




2014: I set a new Guinness World Record for the joggling half-marathon at the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront race, finishing in 1:20:40. I set the unofficial joggling beer mile world record. Late in 2014, I flew to Los Angeles for a three-day TV commercial shoot for Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott.

Michal Kapral joggling half-marathon Toronto running juggling
On my way to the Guinness World Record of 1:20:40 for fastest joggling half-marathon at the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront race. Photo: John Chou




2015: I planned to run the New York City Marathon while juggling but my beanbags were deemed a security risk. The joggling marathon that wasn't made the New York Times, Runner's World and Canadian Running.



2016: Sponsored by Fairfield Inn and Suites, I ran the Chicago Marathon while juggling in 2:55:25, without dropping a ball. The story went massively viral and I spent the next few weeks doing interviews every day. Unreal. The video below, shot by Chicago photographer Wendy Alas, was viewed millions of times, on Good Morning America, ESPN, BBC and elsewhere. Earlier in the year, I joggled another beer mile in 8:48, making ESPN and TMZ.


2017: To be continued. Thanks for coming along for the ride. Has anyone out there been reading this thing for the full 10 years?

Michal Kapral joggling Chicago Marathon running juggling
Joggling the 2016 Chicago Marathon in 2:55:25 without dropping a ball. Photo: Colin B Photography