Lufkin, Texas (KTRE) - Virtual races could be the new trend as social distancing continues in the COVID-19 pandemic.
Caroline Garner has completed two virtual half marathons.
“The first one I signed up for before coronavirus hit,” Garner said. "My friends and I had signed up to do the New York City Half Marathon. It was going to be my first one. It was exciting to know there were going to be others in the world doing the same thing I was doing. "
Garner was also preparing to participate in a half iron man event in Galveston.
“The day I ran my New York City half I received word that the half iron man was being canceled. I started looking for something I could do with my training and heard from a friend, who is an ultra-marathoner. She told me a lot of her events had gone online so I signed up for a trail racing event and I did a half marathon in my home town.”
Mike Mchaney ran is first marathon in January and since has run two more along with a couple of half marathons. He was looking forward to going to Disney to take part in their Star Wars themed marathons.
"I was going to do the Dopey Challenge, Mchaney said. “The first day is a 5K, the second day is a 10 K, the third is a half marathon and you finish on the forth day with a full marathon. You do them consecutively so I guess that is why they call it the Dopey Challenge because you have to be a dope to do it.”
Instead Mike settled on running the virtual version of the Star Wars half marathon. Mchaney points to virtual races as being good during this time because racing as a whole is an individual event.
“These races are individual events,” Mchaney said. “You are with people but it is about you so running alone is not uncommon. You do lose out on the racing community feel but you also know that other people are doing the same thing as you are at that moment.”
“I think it is a great way for us runners to have something to look forward to, to have something to be competitive with, to have the thrill of the event,” Garner said.
A quick search on the internet will bring up plenty of virtual runs. Virtual Run Events has several quarantined themed races right now. Trail Races over Texas also offers unique races. iTri365 aslo has a unique way to get in your miles and also help East Texas small businesses with the Community Coruna Series.