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There are two things runners like to do the most, according to the president and CEO of New York Road Runners, Michael Capiraso: “They like to run and they like to talk about running.”
When social distancing took effect, runners and race organizers turned to the virtual world to connect with apps like the NYRR app, where racers can track the distance they run outdoors.
“If you want to run as part of group training, we have coach sessions that meet on video each week, and then they'll give you a training plan to go out," Capiraso told Fox News. “I think the whole kind of virtual digital thing is spawning other opportunities for people to be engaged.”
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While these virtual options aren't new to NYRR, Capiraso says their platform exploded with racers during the height of the coronavirus pandemic.
“We're hearing from a lot of first-time runners, new runners that want some tips on coaching. And we want to be there to support them,” Capiraso said.
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The CEO and veteran runner believes his organization is lucky to have gotten a “running start” on virtual races two years ago with over 100,000 people crossing the "finish line" across the globe.
Racers also have one other thing to be excited about — unlike in-person races, there is no limit to the number of people who can participate in a virtual race.
“There's no restrictions on [races] and that's what's really great,” Capiraso said. “The other thing is the flexibility of time... we give you a two-week window to run it, as opposed to that one day.”