Joggling Oranges


Now that spring is in the air and I have recovered from my injury, I thought it was time to experiment. I decided it was time to joggle some fruit, instead of my usual juggling balls, to make things a little more interesting and challenging.

I have juggled oranges many times, because their size, shape, and skin texture makes them perfect for juggling. So they seemed like the best fruit to go joggling with. In fact, I have joggled with oranges before, but mostly while running back from the market which is less than half a mile away. Today, however was the first time I ever joggled oranges or any food for more than a few miles. Before I get to the run, let us look at how to pick oranges for juggling or joggling.

IMG_2398The most important thing is for the oranges to be all about the same size, shape, and weight, unless you’re really looking to challenge yourself. Make sure they are spherical and solid. If they are too oblong, they may be difficult to juggle with. About the size of a tennis ball or a little larger is ideal. Since you or someone else will eat them later, be sure they are ripe and fresh, and heavy for their size. Avoid oranges that are discolored. I think navel oranges are best for juggling in my experience.

The oranges I selected were about 8 ounces each, which is double the weight of my preferred Sil-X juggling balls. While joggling these oranges, I could feel the difference and they slowed me down. I managed to run with them for 10 miles, and much to my surprise, I only dropped them once, and that was at the 2 mile mark. So I managed to run 8 miles straight with them without dropping, even while running up and down a 150 foot hill twice, and doing juggling tricks. It took me 1:42 minutes to complete this run. A 10 mile run from last week with my regular juggling balls in warmer weather took me 1:30 minutes.

While running with them, I tried playing in my mind the Sergei Prokofiev opera, The Love for Three Oranges, but couldn’t, since I have no idea how it goes. Oh well, I don’t like opera that much anyway. This very orangey journey got exhausting after a while, especially on those hills, but I kept pushing myself. I couldn’t run in shorts today because it was cold(mid 30s) and very windy, the last gasp of Old Man Winter. It should be very spring-like next week.

In a way, this was like a strange ritual both for challenging myself and for connecting with my food. I have a newfound respect for oranges and Mother Nature, who provides us with these natural, somewhat heavy juggling balls, which also happen to be a good source of some vital nutrients. Granted, it also took thousands of years of selective breeding to produce the orange as we know it today.

I’ve been wondering if joggling fruit would encourage onlookers to eat more of them. I really have no idea. I often wear a vegan T-shirt when the weather is better, and while I like to think I am making an impact, it’s not always easy to tell what people think. Since the only joggler in the immediate area also happens to be a vegan, I hope it gets people thinking.

Of course, besides using them for juggling, you can eat oranges. I hear this is what most people use them for anyway. These particular oranges were so sweet, juicy and fresh, though it felt kind of weird eating them after joggling with them for 10 miles. The juggling didn’t damage them at all.

Oranges are a great source of vitamin C, and fiber. They are also a good source of phyto-chemicals which may also have some health benefits, but the research on this is still preliminary. Most people need to eat more fruit, and it can’t hurt to juggle them too, since most people could use at least a little more exercise.

In case anyone is wondering, I will slowly work my way up to joggling with cantaloupes. Whatever you do, make sure you have fun exercising in the warm, wonderful spring weather.



15 responses to “Joggling Oranges

  1. I’m so glad you are feeling better and are recovering from your injury. I have to admit that this post made me laugh straight away, in a good way though. Running isn’t hard enough for you. Running while juggling isn’t hard enough for you. You go make it harder by adding fruit to the mixture. That’s just priceless. Inspired by you, I have dug out my old juggling balls and am trying to practice a little every day. One of these days, I’ll try to juggle while walking outside – I’ll let you know how I get on. I will not run yet and definitely stay away from the fruit though for now! πŸ˜‰

    • Thanks for your compliments. It really is easier than it looks, and I am glad you had a laugh and even more glad you’re going to give this a try.

      I’ll be very interested in your progress. The key is to have the right rhythm, then you’ll almost forget you’re even juggling while running. Take care and have fun at your races!

      • I’ll gladly keep you posted. At the moment, I’m still trying to just get my juggling a bit more settled and “automatic”. If we get a quiet day this week (wind wise!), I’ll try to take it outside and take some walking steps while juggling and see what happens. I still have to keep my eyes on the balls though, so I am going to have to change that! I’ll keep you posted though! πŸ˜€

  2. Cantaloupes? You better put that on you tube! πŸ™‚

    • Not a bad idea, though it could get a little messy. I think everyone who wants me to joggle cantaloupes secretly just wants to see me drop them and make a big mess. I think you should try it out too πŸ˜‰ Have fun, and take care, Joy!

  3. I joggled the Chicago marathon last October. They said due to security regulations, we were not allowed to bring non-running related sports equipment. I asked if this meant juggling balls, and they said yes. So when life gives you lemons, juggle oranges. I juggled them for the whole marathon and they held up well even with the 13 drops I had along the way.

    • Always great to hear from a fellow joggler. Now that is impressive. Before race day, just to make sure, I always ask the organizers if I can juggle during the race, and so far they’ve always said “Sure, go ahead!”. I’m surprised they wouldn’t let you juggle balls; I guess bigger races have greater security concerns. The marathons I’ve done were small town affairs.

      Have fun at your next race, Joey, and I love that saying about lemons.

      • Here’ s a link to a picture someone took:
        Joey the Juggler

      • Wild Juggler

        Hi again Joey,

        For some reason, the picture isn’t loading. Let me see if my blog settings have anything to do with it, but try to send it again if you can, we would love to see this πŸ™‚

  4. After 10 miles with them, I think I’d feel almost as if I were eating a pet! Or…maybe not quite that bad. I wish I lived in your neighborhood, we never have anything that interesting going on on our street.

    • Who knows, maybe I’ll run through your neighborhood if I do an ultra-run.

      I think you should give it a try, we definitely need more vegan jogglers. Take care!

      • Well, as of now, I can’t even run with my hands free! I’m hoping to start hitting the gym after Pascha, and then who knows that will happen…

  5. I’m glad to hear you’ve recovered from your injury. Maybe it’s from all the oranges you’re eating….

  6. Pingback: Joggling lemons | Wild Juggling

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