Historically, entering the fall season has signaled the start of the race season. This year will look a little different, with the majority of races going to a virtual format.
What’s so cool about this, is that for a lot of runners, the pressure and stress of ‘race day’ is now reduced! You can run with any type of tracker and plan your start time/route, submit to the race organizer, and still receive all the awesome swag per usual.
Plus, you’ll be keeping yourself and local community safe by practicing social distancing and eliminating contact with large crowds.
Now, what I know a lot of runners will miss is that anticipation and excitement that race day usually brings. There’s no reason to let that go, though! We can continue to harness all the fun AND stay safe.
Here are our top 5 must-haves for the BEST virtual race season ever:
- Grab a Buddy. We all know the importance of accountability. Having a virtual/physical training buddy keeps you on training track, and it will also push you to new PR’s. This is why running groups are so popular-you pace yourself off of a faster runner, improving your overall times. Now do the same with your training buddy. Share your run routes, split times and set goals together.
- Get a Mask! You don’t have to wear the mask the entire time you’re running (unless you’re in a heavily populated area), but it’s best to be prepared. You can easily pull the mask up when passing people, and lower it after. There are a variety of masks on the market that are ideal for outdoor training, but the most popular seems to be a buff of some sort.
- Layers. (I always say this word in the Scottish voice of Shrek. Drives my husband crazy LOL). As cooler weather approaches for the majority of the US, having layers is the key to success. Being able to build up, or strip down, is imperative to your body’s ability to keep you cool and energized while on the track.
- Airpods (or other Bluetooth device). I am a more recent convert to the airpods (as in, January of 2020), and honestly can’t rave about them enough. I download my favorite podcast, and the miles seem to fly by. Our best bets for safety are to have 1 airpod in, and 1 out, so you can hear fellow runners, cyclist or drivers.
- Podcasts. I’m here to say that a podcast or audio book make my runs feel like a little treat. Since most of us no longer have a commute to work, and are surrounded by our loved ones constantly, getting out of the house and being able to just BE is a bright spot in my day. Here are a few of my favorite podcasts:
- The Morning Toast
- This is a pop culture podcast that uploads DAILY, so I’m never without content
- Noble Blood
- I just discovered this recently. It’s a historical podcast that is under 30 min, and documents famous people throughout history.
- Diet Starts Tomorrow
- This awesome podcast dives into the toxicity of diet culture, and discusses the various ways to come to terms with a healthy body.
- What You Should Know
- This podcast delves into the truth behind all the stories…both the important and inane.
Be sure to let us know what virtual races you’re participating in, and stay safe out there <3