Thursday, February 8, 2018

Virtual Races in the Philippines !

Aside from the regular road races, there is also a virtual race and it has now hit the Philippines as well. 

For a virtual race, it would essentially mean logging your running miles whenever you run and uploading it at their website.  So you could be running in the gym, out on the roads, on the mountains and all of these would count as long as they would fall within the validity dates of the rules and regulations of the virtual race.

Garmin actually had its own virtual challenges and I would run against fellow running friends in the hopes of getting in the most distance within that time period.  It serves as a motivational tool for our marathon training and it makes us aware if we start to slack and other runners keep adding miles.  There are no prizes at the end of these challenges, only bragging rights from the winner.

For the Paris Marathon 2017, they also had their own running App where there were a series of challenges in it to encourage you to keep running for your marathon training.  This can be a series of 10km tasks that needed to be accomplished within a week's time, or it can be a required one 25km distance that needed to be done over the weekend.  Once done, you will get a virtual badge from the App.  Once a certain number of badges were completed, it would unlock new levels and new challenges.  For anyone who completes all badges, they get a chance to win one pair of Asics running shoes, which can be claimed during the Marathon Expo. 

So there are a lot of ways for these virtual challenges and races.  Recently via my Facebook feed, I stumbled on two virtual races in the Philippines.  The premise for both are quite similar:  get a total distance done for the entire month of January and if you do, you will get a finisher shirt and medal. 

Total distances to conquer  for the month ranges from 25km to that of 200km.  The loot is the same regardless of the distance but the shirt and medal would display the distance you joined so the higher the distance, the higher the bragging right provided of course that you reach it before January 31st.

As I had a full marathon race in January and a half marathon race also in January, I would be able to lock in 63km already from these two races.  It would also be a consolation prize for me should something happen to me and I won't be able to finish the Hong Kong marathon within the cut-off time.  So I joined for two races, one from and the other from Go Run Sketchers.

Both cost about the same of Php 950 to Php 1,000, which can easily be paid via bank deposits and uploading the deposit slips to their respective websites as proof of payment.  Runs made during the month will be uploaded in the same websites by taking a picture of it using your phones, and each run will be verified by the site's moderator and added to your total miles. 

So I have been running and logging in miles, and uploading them almost immediately to the websites as a sign of my accomplishments.  I finished the PSE Half Marathon and logged that in.  By God's grace, I also finished the Hong Kong Marathon and logged that in too.  And I kept running still.  I kept uploading screen shots of my runs and pretty soon I exceeded my target goals of 100km for the month. 

I had hoped they would have a 150km challenge but there was only a 200km after the 100km and I wasn't that confident that I could accomplish that.

At the end of the challenges, I have logged in about 175km for the month and almost immediately, I received the finisher kits from the mail:

Sketchers Go Run 100km Virtual Race 100km Virtual Race

No problems encountered with delivery of finishers kit (and kids had a blast trying to guess what was in the packages).  Shirts were of nice material and medals were pretty too.  So because of the HK Marathon, I ended up with three medals instead of one!  Ha Ha!

Good motivation tool as well to keep running.  Will definitely join future virtual races.  Maybe the 200km would be more challenging next time!


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