Virtual Races for Runners


Madison Yee, Staff Writer

For many runners, races are the one thing that make the long hours and miles of practice count. However, with the coronavirus pandemic, races have been cancelled, causing a disruption in the running community. Because of this, the idea of virtual races has given purpose to runners once again, allowing anyone in the community to participate in accomplishing a certain distance within a time frame.

The great thing about these virtual races is that there is a lot of flexibility in how you take on the challenge. Depending on your situation, you can do this task anywhere and at your own pace, which is a relief for those who are at different skill levels. By logging in your time and distance daily, virtual races present a simple way to stay involved with running amidst COVID-19. With this, there are also typically prizes to serve as a goal, which adds on to the satisfaction of finishing. These rewards push and motivate participants to finish what they started while preventing any slacking off.

“With virtual races, you don’t need to deal with traffic, parking, poor weather or unexpected schedule conflicts or injuries that might cause you to miss the race,” said Mark Petrillo, founder of Virtual Strides.

Even if you aren’t the most experienced runner, there are still a variety of other virtual races open for all to join to get in some physical activity! Likewise, many are taking this chance to raise money for organizations and charities. It is a win-win situation and has become a smart tactic to get others to help out with these issues, such as lending a hand to families and children in need. For example, the website Gone For a Run is a notable outlet that has different races available for you to sign up for. With different themes and awards, the options are practically endless! And, it doesn’t end there. First Avenue Middle School is also hosting a 5k virtual run/walk from Nov. 1 to Nov. 30.

“As our First Avenue students were adjusting to distance learning, we realized that they were not as active as they used to be. We felt a virtual 5k run would be ideal for students and their families to get away from the electronics and go outside for a run or walk,” stated Judy Lee, President of First Avenue’s PTSA.

With four other sponsors supporting it, hopefully this event will bring in money to the school’s PTSA for their dedication to the staff and students. At the affordable price of only $15 per entry, you can receive a one of a kind medal with your name and time, along with a shirt. Therefore, sign up soon while you can!

Mrs. Lee also mentioned, “We are lucky in Arcadia to have a beautiful county park to run in as well as students and their families who are up for a challenge. The event is open to anyone and for all levels of fitness and abilities, so we encourage everyone to participate.”

The idea of virtual races is expanding rapidly so, if you have extra time and are an athlete or anyone who wants to stay fit, try looking into an online race to participate in!


Graphic courtesy of ASSTRA.COM