Michael Capiraso is not only an entrepreneur but a seasoned runner who hasn’t let COVID or cancelled races stop him from running. Because of guidelines in various states and countries, holding an in-person running event has been nearly impossible. Great races like the Boston and New York Marathons, have both had to cancel their in-person races. Luckily, virtual races have started to take place, and although not the same, they can be just as helpful in your conditioning efforts.

A virtual race can be signed up for much like an in-person event, by registering online. There are even races that offer T-shirts, medals, mileage trackers and almost everything you can think of, but a live crowd. Michael Capiraso ran the New York Marathon as part of his duties when he was with the New York Road Runners organization and acknowledges that while virtual races aren’t the same, they are still valuable to runners. The need to have a challenge and compete can be done and tracked virtually much as it can in an in-person event. Many of the virtual races offer apps that will guide and track your progress through the entire race, whether it’s a 5k or full-on marathon.

One of the many benefits of running virtually during this COVID epidemic is that maintaining proper social distance is much easier. Of course, wearing a mask when you are with others and spacing yourself properly if you come across other runners still needs to be practised. But all of this is far easier than in-person races that naturally start in groups.

As for competing against others, many apps allow sharing and even smartwatches can help you connect to competitions. There’s even a website, joggingbuddy.com, to help you find someone to compete against or if you need encouragement to run that extra mile.

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