Running in virtual reality

Sometimes I pretend I am seconds away from breaking the tape when I am out on a run. I can hear the crowds cheering and chanting my name while I breeze across the invisible finish line.

  • Apr. 1, 2016 8:02 a.m.

Sometimes I pretend I am seconds away from breaking the tape when I am out on a run.

I can hear the crowds cheering and chanting my name while I breeze across the invisible finish line.

It’s a beautiful thing.

And you too can join my ludicrous daydreams with the latest craze in running circles – virtual races. There’s even a medal at the end of your run. I can’t promise the adoring fans.

To enter a virtual race, you simply pay the entry fee online at a virtual running website and run the specified distance anytime and anywhere. Race organizers will send you a medal and often a t-shirt.



When Amalie Tymstra, Toni Jonas and Kim Burdick started running virtual races in the winter to stay active, the Central Alberta runners noticed there was a shortage of Canadian-based virtual running websites.

So the runners took matters in their own hands and set the ground work for Make a Run For It Virtual Races, a monthly race series. Race entry will be $35 per race.

The trio are still working out the kinks and the registration for the first race opens on April 15. Runners can choose to do a 5K or 10K distance. To start they will allow 150 virtual runners in the field.

The best part? The proceeds from the race will go to a different Central Alberta charity every month. The first charity is the Red Deer Food Bank.

Amalie said she wants to spread their joy of running and encourage others to make their kilometres matter. They like to run 5K and 10K races and the odd Spartan race.

Once the runners tackle the distance either walking or running, they will go online to www.makearunforit.ca (launched on April 15) and the Lacombe-made medal will be mailed out to the racer.

Amalie said it was important for them to ensure the medals are good quality because they have had their share of disappointing medals. Look for the medal reveal on the Make a Run For It Virtual Races website.

In the future they hope to expand the series to include options to raise money for charity.



RUN FOR BEER





A new race in Red Deer is brewing. Troubled Monk Brewery is serving up its inaugural 5K and 10K road race on June 18.

All proceeds will go to the Red Deer Watershed Alliance. It’s actually quite fitting because without water, they wouldn’t be able to make beer. Yes there will be a beer garden following the race. The 10K is a loop while the 5K is an out and back along the Red Deer River. Find out all the details on its website at www. troubledmonk.com and about the Red Deer Watershed Alliance at www.rdrwa.ca.

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