Almost everyone uses some sort of device when they run. Maybe we listen to music, track our route, time ourselves, but more and more our devices are becoming an integral part of our outdoor activities. Virtual running has been growing in popularity as it allows you to run with others at your own pace, from anywhere in the world.An interesting feature of the RaceRunner app is the ability to create personalized training races for free! You may run solo or train together with friends from anywhere in the world. Many of us prefer to run alone and you can still do that with virtual running. Even though others may be running the same race as you, they’re not physically with you. This means you can run with others while keeping the comforts and freedoms of solo running. You don’t have to change your routine to experience this exciting new trend. Here’s how!
Step 1: Determine the type of race
Open your app and go to the train option. Tap the plus sign and you’ll be taken to a page asking what type of race you’d like to create. There are two options, real-time or flex-time. Each has their own unique benefits so pick whatever works better for you.
A real-time race means that you have a set date and time that the race will begin. You and your friends can still run anywhere in the world, but you are all running at the same time regardless of location. You can decide to race each other or simply run together.
As the name suggests, a flex-time race allows for greater flexibility for both you and those that you share and invite to your race. You can set a time period in which your training race can be completed so you and your friends can complete the race whenever works best for them. My friends and I have very different running habits so we love this option. I can run first thing in the morning, but my friend can run after work.
Step 2: Customize your race
After you’ve selected which type of race you’d like to create tap next. This will bring you to a page where you can enter a few details including the race title, a short description, and your desired distance. Tap next and set the date and time of your race. After you’ve entered this you’ll now see a page with a pre-made banner. You can either keep the banner that RaceRunner has created for you, or you can change the banner to a photo of your choosing.
Step 3: Invite your friends
Last but not least make sure to share and invite your friends so they can participate in your newly created training race. The more the merrier here so share it to your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or whatever! Run on your own while still feeling the support of others. I like to get competitive with it and race my friends, but don’t let the word race intimidate you. The voice prompts throughout have helped my friends and I to push ourselves to reach new personal records! So get competitive with it or just have fun and experience running in a new and exciting way.
Step 4: Completing your race
For a flex-time race you can begin anytime as soon as it goes live. Go onto your app, find your race, and tap run. A voice prompt will tell you to start, and you’re off to the races. Throughout your run you’ll hear different stats and motivation. You’ll hear when you’ve completed every half kilometre, your pace at every kilometre, and where you are in relation to other runners. I can speak from personal experience that this is incredibly motivating. Hearing that you’re doing well or that one of your friends is right behind you is such a great feature unique to the RaceRunner app. It feels like you’re running with others while still being able to run any time, in any place, at any pace.
Another great feature is that you can leave the race at anytime, and try again at anytime within the racing period you set up. This feature is great if you were unable to finish at the time, or you want to try and beat your time.
For a real-time race it will automatically begin at the time you previously specified, so make sure you’re in the RaceRunner app and ready to go! Once the race has begun it will work just like a flex-time race. You’ll hear the same type voice prompts encouraging you on your run. Being able to hear this is great so that I don’t have to try to check my device while running, which slows me down. As well, knowing where others are at in the race can help to push you to do your best. That hint of competition is such a powerful force and it can really help you get past any mental blocks.
Step 5: Share your results
When you’re finished your run, share the results with your friends and encourage them to share as well! Creating training races leading up to an event is a great resource to keep you on track and accountable. Use this function to train with others, with all the freedoms of running on your own!
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