Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Jelly Bean is here!!!

I recently discovered a new kind of race.  Something I'd never heard of until I signed up for the 13 in 2013 Challenge:  virtual races.  Who knew something so crazy even existed??  A virtual race is a race you can run anytime, anywhere you want and with whomever you choose.  You can do it outside or on the treadmill (and some people even do it on the elliptical if they're unable to run).  You can run, walk, or do both. You can do it solo or grab a group of friends and make it a social gathering.  Many charge a small fee for a medal and some swag, but there are some free ones out there, too.
I like that they give you an option for a race when there may not be any races close to you. I imagine virtual races would be fabulous if you lived in a small town or rural community where there isn't a lot of races put on locally. I belong to a few virtual run groups on FB.  I often see pictures of people who have chosen a virtual race for their first one because they're too intimidated to do an actual race with other people.  It's neat to see them gaining confidence and pushing themselves further than they ever thought possible.  To see a runner accomplish a huge goal like running a mile without stopping, or finishing their first 5K, 10K, or half marathon is so exciting!! It brightens my day to see people overcoming obstacles they never thought they could.

Enter the Jelly Bean Virtual Race.  I follow Run with Jess on FB and when I heard about this race series I had to join in the fun.  Anyone can sign up for free.  You heard me: FREE!  She sold medals for finishers until she ran out.  I didn't sign up for a medal; I just wanted in on the fun.  When the "race" is over, you submit your time results for each of the races you did (she offers a 5K, 10K, half marathon and 21K bike option), and you're entered into a drawing for some FAB prizes.  I'm going to run anyway, so I might as well join some fun and have a chance to win some neat swag.  Who doesn't love free stuff??

Today is the first day the race series is open (it's open from March 20-31st).  I ran my 5K today, and then hit the gym for some yoga.  It was the perfect start to the day, and I'm one jelly bean closer to completing all 4 events.  Woot!
Head on over to Run with Jess if you're interested in signing up and participating in the Jelly Bean Virtual Race series.


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