BOB Strollers Review + Stroller Running Q&A

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When I lived in NYC and had the opportunity to run in Central Park every day, I saw tons of mothers pushing their little ones in running strollers. I always knew that I wanted to be one of those moms when I had little ones of my own.

So when it was time to register for my baby shower, I did some research and asked a few friends which stroller brand they recommended for running. All signs pointed to a BOB Stroller by BritaxBut then I had to decide which model to get – there’s the Revolution SE, Revolution CE, Ironman, Sport Utility and Motion. It was a bit overwhelming with all the different models and it was made even tougher because a lot of the baby stores we went to didn’t carry the stroller in the store or only had one model to test out.

Ultimately we chose the Revolution SE. We did not want to register (or buy) two strollers, so whatever stroller we were going to use for running would have to double as an everyday stroller as well.

Bob stroller

My oldest when he was 5 months old (May 2011)

I’ve been asked a lot over the years about which brand/model I’d recommend. It was always tough for me to truthfully answer this because up until recently, I had really only run with one – the BOB Revolution SE.  And while I loved it, I couldn’t accurately answer because I had not run with any other BOB models (does that make sense?).

Well, good news! A few weeks ago, I was sent the BOB Ironman stroller to test out and review (as part of the Saucony Mom Blogger Program).

bob stroller3

bob stroller4

There’s a TON of features that both strollers have that I love:

  • Lightweight: BOB strollers range between 23 and 26 lbs.  
  • Convenient Transport: Two-step folding. Squeeze the lever by the handlebars as you fold the top over and then pull the cord as you lift up. SUPER easy.  Plus, it literally folds onto itself so it can fit in tight spaces and trunks.
  • Car Seat Adapter: You don’t have to wait until your little one is old enough to sit up. You have the option to add a carseat adapter which allows you to run/walk with your child much earlier (I didn’t start until my boys were ~3 months because it was too cold prior to that). I love that it allows your child to face you while being higher than a normal stroller – so you have easy access to them (and can watch them) the whole time you are running/walking.
bob stroller2

Fresh air for our 4 week old! (Feb 2011)

  • All weather shield / sun shield: These are additional accessories you can purchase which protects your little ones from wind, sun, rain, etc.  I have the all weather shield and love it because even when it’s not terribly cold out, I like the boys to be a bit more protected since they are not moving + have the wind hitting them as I run so it’s always a bit cooler for them.
  • Suspension System: The first time I pushed the stroller, I was amazed at how smooth it felt. The suspension system minimizes the bumps and uneven surfaces to provide a more gentle ride for your little ones.
  • Comfy Seat: Padded and reclining for extra comfort for your little one.  If I run around nap time, I will keep the seat tiled back; if a nap is not likely, then I prefer to keep the seat upright.
  • LOTS more features can be found here (Ironman) and here (Revolution SE)

BOB Ironman

ironman stroller

Pros

  • Lightweight: At 23 lb, this is the lightest of the BOB strollers (tied with the CE and Motion)
  • Fixed Front Wheel: Provides increased stability when running
  • Easier to run with than the Revolution SE (in my opinion). My husband and I took our boys out for a run – each pushing a stroller. We switched strollers a few times mid-run because I wanted to see if there was any difference. My oldest (weighing ~31 lbs) was in the Ironman while my youngest (~18 lbs) was in the Revolution SE.  Despite the 13 lb difference, it was MUCH easier to push the Ironman – especially going up hills.

two boys

Cons

  • Fixed Front Wheel: Takes a bit of getting used to. In order to turn while running, you have to push down on the handlebar and lift the front wheel off the ground. Not the biggest issue, but if you are running on a path or road with a ton of narrow turns, it could be a bit of an annoyance. 
  • Large Wheels + Fixed Front Wheel: Makes it tough to use for anything other than running. Does not turn easily (especially when you are not running), so using in a mall or other crowded area would be really tough.

Revolution SE

revolution-se-43

Pros

  • Maneuverability: The front wheel’s ability to lock into place (for running) or swivel makes it a breeze to take wherever you want. I have run up to 10 miles with this stroller AND taken it all over – airports, malls, races (to spectate), day trips into NYC with zero issues.  When the front wheel lock is disengaged, it is a piece of cake to turn and get around tight corners.  

Cons

  • A bit bulkier, heavier, and harder to run with than the Ironman model

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Frequently Asked Stroller Questions:

Which stroller would I recommend?  At the end of the day, I would recommend any of the BOB strollers. The key is to determine what the stroller will be used for.  Just running?  My recommendation is the Ironman stroller.  Running and some everyday use?  Then the Revolution SE is probably a better fit for you.

Price? They both MSRP for around the same price ($409 for the Ironman, $449 for the Revolution SE) but keep you can likely find a sale on Amazon or one of the baby website (sometimes as low as $300).

Used or New?  If you start looking far enough out from when you need the stroller, you can often find a good deal for a used stroller on Craigslist (often for 25-50% off the MSRP).  A lot of the strollers listed are barely or gently used with almost no wear and tear, so buying used is a GREAT option.

When did I start running with my boys?  My oldest was born in January and youngest in late September, so it wasn’t warm enough for me to run with them until mid-April (oldest was 3 months old). I know some mother runners who started earlier (10 weeks?).  I would say that it is a personal decision – your child is completely safe and secure in the carseat (the carseat gets strapped and locked into place) so as long as you aren’t running over rocky or really uneven terrain, I would say you can run as soon as you feel up to it.

family run3

When can your child face forward?  I would say that this is both a personal and developmental decision.  You want your child to be able to sit up before you take them out of the carseat.  I waited until my oldest was ~5 months old for walks and about ~6 months for running.  Keeping them in the carseat for longer is not the worst idea – you will have better access to them and can see when they are awake/sleeping without having to run alongside the stroller.

When is it too cold to run with your child?  I do not run with my children when it’s lower than 45-50 degrees.  But it depends on a lot of factors. If it’s sunny, then maybe I will take them if it’s a bit colder.  If it’s overcast and damp out, it needs to be a bit warmer. Again, there are plenty of parents who run with their children in much colder temperatures – if you have the all weather shield and your child is bundled up, then colder weather is not an issue. Age of child also comes into play for me – the older they get, the more comfortable I am with lower temperatures.

My child doesn’t like to sit in the stroller…what can I do to get my run in?  My oldest never stayed happy in the stroller for more than 10 minutes at a time. The only way I was able to get any decent type of run in was to time it with his nap.  I would leave just before his naptime – which often meant ~10 minutes of awake time + 30-60 minutes of sleep time + ~5-10 minutes of awake time.  However, the good news is that he outgrew the dislike of the stroller and actually ASKS me to go for a run now.

Picture 2518

But how can I keep them entertained? Dorothy from Mile-Posts has a great post on this with some ideas and tips that she has used while running with her 3 kids.

What pace should I run with the stroller?  Typically, my pace is about 15-30 seconds slower per mile when I am pushing the stroller.  But, I don’t worry about pace as much as effort when I am pushing the stroller.  If it’s meant to be an easy run, then I make sure it feels easy.  Some days I feel great and my pace is almost identical to when I’m running solo.  Other days, it can be closer to a minute (per mile) slower.  Hills and wind play a much greater role in pace when you are pushing 50+ lbs of child and stroller then when you are running solo. Also the more you run with the stroller, the easier it will become.  The first few runs of the year with the stroller for me are always tough – everything seems to hurt.  But, I gradually get faster as the summer goes on.

Do you have a running stroller? Brand? 

How do you keep your children entertained in the stroller? 

For more information on BOB Strollers:

I don’t post here every day, but I post all of my workouts (and other happenings) on Instagram on a daily basis {NYCRunningMama}.

For More NYC Running Mama training updates, pictures and ramblings, check out:

*Disclaimer: I was sent the BOB Ironman Stroller to test out and review from Britax.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.*

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    67 thoughts on “BOB Strollers Review + Stroller Running Q&A

    1. Good: this stroller is easy to collapse and set up. It rolls over the most uneven sidewalks, forest trails and sidewalk curbs with the greatest of ease. It is really solidly built and highly maneuverable.

      Not so good: the foam handlebar started to crack within a month of use. After several months, it has badly deteriorated. For such an expensive stroller, the use of this cheap foam padding is really disappointing and somewhat inexcusable. On top of that, the padding is not designed to be removable short of replacing the entire upper handlebar. You’d think they would make it replaceable since I’m sure they’re aware of this. The stroller is really heavy, which I suppose is the downside to having something so solidly built, and it is quite bulky even when collapsed, although the wheels detach easily to allow even greater compatibility. Expect little additional trunk space in your car.

      Overall, with the really annoying exception of the handlebar padding, this stroller is wonderful and we’ve been very pleased with it.

    2. Great article and review on the BOB Ironman and the Revolution SE. Being taller than average I really like the new BOB Flex stroller that is basically the same as the Revolution but with the addition of an adjustable handlebar.

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    10. I enjoyed reading your article about the stroller. Very interesting. I had bought for the baby’s first three years ago. After reading your article, I am interested in buying a brand that you explain when I have a second baby later. Especially you mentioned that many people loved this. Thank you.
      Ita Maulani recently posted..Bob Revolution SE Single Stroller ReviewMy Profile

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    14. The best thing about BOB strollers is their stability due to the three wheel arrangement. You can run at a pretty good pace and never have to worry about tipping over with either the single or double stroller.

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    16. You are obviously an accomplished runner, and so it’s no wonder you love BOB’s. Because they have such a loyal following among running families, they have tremendous resale values, and it’s not unheard of for BOB owners to recover almost their entire original investment when they sell their BOB.

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    19. Ah what an awesome stroller you’ve chosen to fall in love with. We felt similar after our child was born – enough that we still have it and write about it every day at Go BOB Stroll.

      To my wife and I, the BOB is #1 for many reasons. As you know, it goes anywhere with ease. It can manage curbs, grocery aisles as easily as a rough trail or sand. It has excellent resale value and holds up throughout the years. Cannot be beat!
      Jake recently posted..Car Seat Reviews for Your BOB StrollerMy Profile

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    22. I absolutely Love BOB! I wish I bought it when I was choosing strollers. I currently have an Indie that is really a great stroller, but it’s more for power walking and not for power jogging. LOL. When I was shopping for the stroller I didn’t know I would get hooked on jogging. It’s too late now. My daughter is almost out of it! ~Susan
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    24. I LOVE my BOBs. I got the Revolution SE at my shower when Sophia was born and it has been our only stroller. Then last mother’s day before Jack was born Mark found a great deal on a used Revolution Dullie and got it for me. Sounds like the Ironman is a nice ride!
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    25. I’ve only ever run with the Revolution SE and I think that’s what we’ll get for Cheese Baby. I’d LOVE to have the Ironman for running, since the thought of something lighter and easier to maneuver sounds so appealing! But we need a stroller that works for running + everyday use, so the SE it is. Either way, I’m super excited about it! All the BOB strollers are really well made and come highly recommended, so I figure we can’t go wrong with the Revolution. I can’t wait to have a new running partner next spring :)

      Okay – off to FINALLY finish your Ironman post!
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    26. We have the SE and I love it! The only issue I’ve had so far is the tires getting low (we’ve had it for about 9 months now), which I had read somewhere of that happening. We’ve had to fill them up once, but they’re fine again!! That’s hardly a complaint either, just wanted to note for other people reading this!!!

      I would love to see how the Ironman handles!! Especially since it felt lighter. Totally cool 😉

      • …I love running with my daughter in our BOB, but I have to admit that when I saw all of the moms out running with the joggers before I tried it, I thought it was a bit of a joke. However, now that I complete my mid-long run on Sundays with her (covering 6-10 miles depending on the weather), I have a new found respect for anyone who can push a 20 lb stroller with a 20+ lb kid for any distance.
        The stroller adds a new level of intensity to my workouts, and anyone who thinks that moms (or dads) who are cheating by having a stroller to carry all of their food and water for a run have obviously never tried it. I became a believer and I commend anyone who is willing to keep up the level of intensity required to run any distance, especially some women that I see running half & full marathons pushing a stroller. (Not only is the runner struggling to push the stroller, the kid is having to get up before dawn and sit still for 2-5 hours while their parent runs, and what kid wants to do that?) I know I have already posted on here, but I thought that you (and everyone else who runs with their kids) deserve some additional respect for getting out there and not accepting the old belief that because you have kids you can’t do the things you love.

    27. Bob Revolutions here…the single and the Dualie. Love them. Really like the flexibility of the swiveling (but lockable) front wheel. I can run 10 miles or so with either, no big deal! My runs end up being 45-60 sec slower per mile than my “normal” pace. I’ve run with the kiddos in the actual seat since they were about 3-4 weeks old! I just reclined the seat, and put in one of those carseat/stroller support things to help support their head. They have always been happy in there. I bring a snack and a drink for them, and we are usually all set. I agree that nap time is a great time to go, so they can sleep for a good portion of it. When I only had one kiddo, I used to go during her nap time and see if I could keep running until she woke up…haha.

    28. We have a double chariot. I’ve only taken it running a few times because it’s basically permanently attached to the bike (love this feature!) but I love it. Lots of storage space and perfect for two.

      As a side question: do you have more info on the Saucony mom blogger program? :)
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    29. I have done quite a bit of stroller running also. I have two Chariot’s Cougar’s, one single, and a double. It’s more like the Bob Ironman, with the fixed front wheel (though you can buy stroller wheels as an option). I love them, they are great running strollers. I especially like the built in weather cover. I live in Calgary, and our weather can change suddenly, so it’s nice to have a cover you can pull out anytime. I also have run in pretty cold temps (below 0F) with the stroller, and the kids always stay toasty warm inside the stroller. The other great feature is that they convert to a bike trailer, or x-country ski trailer. We bought both the strollers used, as there are always lots of chariot’s listed for sale here, I think we paid around 50% less than retail.
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    30. I got a stroller with our travel system and never used it. I knew I wanted to be able to run with my daughter to give the wife a break from time to time between her trying to breastfeed, so I looked into joggers. I talked to a few friends who had them and they all swore by their BOBs. Then, I had to decide among the BOB choices. I knew that the Revolution SE would be easier to maneuver, but I was unsure about the ease of running with it due to the swivel. My wife protested (and still does) about the fixed Ironman wheel, but it was definitely a good decision, but like you said, it is a little difficult to move around in tight places. (I usually take just enough weight off the front to glide it through the turns which minimizes bouncing and the amount of effort required to lift the wheel off the ground.) All in all, the Ironman was a good decision for me, although convincing my wife that an Ironman dualie is a good idea if/when we have a second baby will be difficult. :) Thank you for your review. I have been interested about what someone who has used both thought of the two. This review was VERY helpful.

    31. We have a BOB Duallie that has been a life saver since the kiddos were born. Like you, it’s the only stroller I’ve owned but I can honestly say we’ve gotten our money’s worth and then some from it. My kids are just over 3 and I can still get them to hop in for a run (if it means stopping at a park of course!). :)
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    32. great post! we have the Bob Revolution and love it – I’ve run over a thousand kilometres with mine in the past two years. My 2 year old is my best running partner!

    33. We have a Baby Jogger and LOVE it. We looked into the BOB strollers, but then one of my husband’s co-workers told us he’d be willing to sell us his Baby Jogger at a great price. He bought it for his daughter but only used it a few times because he injured his back. It was essentially brand new! While the fixed front wheel does take some getting used to, it’s the only way to go when it comes to serious running. We’ve pushed our girls all over the place, including some smooth rails-to-trails paths.
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