Disclaimer: I received entry to the Global Running Day 24 Hour Virtual Relay to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!
When 2020 started, I joined a virtual challenge to stay motivated and set some goals. It was also a way to keep connected with a few of my running friends across the country. It wasn’t a race; but more of a way to stay on track; but with a deliberate amount of miles and some friendly competition.
Fast forward to March and the ‘outbreak’ of COVID-19 ultimately taking all the fun out of live events….well… limiting the number of people permitted to gather in close proximity for prolonged periods of time….
I was; (like most,) left without a racing season. I have learned a lot during this time and should probably write a post about what I’ve learned and what benefits (and hindrances) the pandemic has brought up; but all that was a preamble to saying I participated in another virtual event. Again, not a race, but another way to stay active, motivated, and connected.
What I liked:
The Relay was a fun way to participate with other runners across my time zone. The premise was fairly simple; 1 person runs 30 minutes then hands off to the next for a total of 38 runners, running for 24 hours! The concept reminded me of relay for life, and i was able to connect with a few people I new.
It was simple to participate and the hand off between team members was simple.
I could choose which time block I wanted to run, and there was even a discount for “undesirable” time slots.
Obviously since this is a virtual race, I could run anywhere. I specifically chose a route that I could accomplish in about 30 minutes; but also was well it so I could (of course) grab a decent photo for IG.
I didn’t have to compete. It wasn’t a race. It was low key and fun.
What I thought could be improved:
I felt communication was a bit lacking. Granted, the time frame to put this together was short, but something like this could have worked:
-Registration / welcome email which has a link to a download able bib and somewhere telling us we will receive communication 24hours before our run with contact details.
-1 week out reminder that we will get contact details 24 hours before the race and a link to download a bib. Maybe an encouraging reminder to invite our friends to open time slots.
-Week of (maybe its too much?) Telling us about open slots; offering a discount to double down and take 2 time slots or offering the option to switch tome slots (if something changed like work schedule.)
-24 hours before with hand off contact info.
Because I am a nerd, I kept looking at the signup page to see what time blocks were open. I noticed it was difficult to fill names across the board. I think, in part, was the initial concept was to have a sign up per iconic metropolitan city (I participated with Philadelphia, at the same time someone from New York and Washington DC was running.) I think there could have been fewer teams or cross continental teams running together as a whole.
Because I can be competitive….There could have been a team with the most distance covered in 24 hours competition. But I didn’t see a space to upload results… maybe next year?
They could also (as a side note) have a really fun take on this concept…
East Coast Distance Challenge vs. West Coast Distance Challenge vs. Continental Distance Challenge
The Continental team would be runners from across the country (i.e. New York-ers handing off to Texans, handing off to Californians..) where as the Coastal teams are runners in the same time zones.
All in all it was a fun experience which I will most likely participate in next year.