Virtual Races | 4 Reasons Every Runner Should Run One

Nobody can fathom the fact that races have been cancelled. We can only control so much. This pandemic has caused tons of stress and havoc, both of which have been such a hassle for us all to handle. Running and run coaching has enabled me to power through this time, and has helped me to show up for my athletes as my best and strongest self! I hope to only help the other athletes that I Coach from here on out with my new online services in addition to several other runners that I'm surrounded by.

Shifting 100% of my Business to the Online Space

Before the pandemic, I was coaching in-person for the most part. Ever since this whole pandemic started, I’ve steadily built my business online, servicing athletes worldwide through my private coaching platform offerings. I am fortunate enough to proudly say that I Coach runners across the country. OH YEAH!

I place a strong emphasis on having the proper ability to recognize and acknowledge the importance of each athlete that I Coach. This is a major part of my coaching philosophy, as I believe every coaching relationship needs to stem from trust.

This pandemic has brought both myself & my running team closer. Through all of the ups and downs we've all faced these last several months, it's been a whirlwind of an adventure. But, we've been through it all together. My runners along with me is what I mean by that.

Anyways, that's my silver lining of this whole quarantine period ordeal, just in case you didn't catch that! :).

Let me fast forward just a bit here. Once I figured out how to run my business virtually, I started by rearranging my programming and putting my online systems in place. I made sure that my work had been aligned with the new online environment! This is how I tapped into the virtual coaching space.

How I Coach Runners Virtually

Platforms like Zoom have allowed me to keep close ties with my athletes, and to keep that social engagement higher than I ever would’ve thought. A major part of my coaching philosophy is to provide quality time for my privately coached 🏃🏻‍♀️, giving them turnkey, customizable approaches that serve to help them achieve their training and lifestyle goals and needs. Additionally, I serve as an accountability coach, a mentor and a friend to each runner I work with! I have LIVE strength-training sessions with most of my runners 1x/week, just to add. This all allows me to properly assess each runners gait from a LIVE Zoom assessment, as well as their breathing. This platform makes it easy for me to see each athlete, and then to properly and thoughtfully assess certain limitations in each of their customized strength-training routines that might be a burden for running.

4 Reasons Every Runner Should Commit to A Virtual Race

  1. Buddying up during training anyone?! For the runners that I Coach, this holds true! I’ve paired up my athletes to challenge them to hold their run buddies accountable. Each mesocycle (every 6 weeks), we have a new weekly challenge for each group to do three things: complete, hold each other accountable throughout the challenge every week and ensure each athlete in each group is completing the workouts by sharing workout stats after the run with their group members! Consistency, accountability and then ability to accurately measure and track results for each athlete in each group is how the winners of each challenge will be chosen with a prize of Tifosi Optics sunglasses (affiliates) for those summer training runs. Each athlete on the winning team gets a FREE pair!

  2. Friendly competition. It moves us ahead. We all want to be better and do better. When we see that runner on the Strava leaderboard who’s pace is about 3-sec ahead per mile, we automatically feel a natural instinct within us that wants to run that, but faster! Game on! Competition makes us push our limits so we can see what we’re truly capable of doing. This becomes possible when each of us can eliminate the fear of success and any self-doubt.

  3. Time trial runs are a great way to progress any running workout in an overall run program. For example, if you run a 5K time trial and you drop time in comparison to a 5K that you ran a month prior to that time trial, you have a metric to use to progress your program to strategically make your paces for your intervals, reps and tempo runs faster! And better yet, this can be completed by performing a virtual time trial and uploading your stats to Strava, or your portal where you share your running stats!

  4. Try new methods out! Whether you’re training for a race or not, you have the time right now to focus on speedwork for example versus building your endurance and incorporating some Fartlek work here and there. MEH. Take advantage of this time to train your body in different modalities and experiment with different structured training to see and understand what methods work best for you and your personal goals! Work with your Coach, or your running community to help you comprise your new training plan! Your time to shine will come! Right now, patience is virtue. Explore and enjoy for now. For once, we have time on our side!

I hope that you can easily apply a couple of virtual races into your marathon training program this summer! This might just help you to keep both yourself and your running friends on your toes!

Now is the time to stay motivated! It's time to bring our run community together by way of these FREE virtual races being hosted by my own run club, as well as various other run clubs on Strava's virtual racing platform worldwide.

Time to get better, even with the humid weather! One stride at a time.

Happy Summer Training!

Coach Alli


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