More Virtual

More Virtual

Last week I finished the Ring of Kerry Challenge I discussed in the July 28 post, How virtual challenges are keeping me motivated and saving my sanity. It was 124 miles and I chose to do it all running. Adding walking, biking or swimming miles was allowed, but for this one, I chose just to include running miles.

We got all decked out in our matching InknBurn Celtic singlet and mask and headed out for our first challenge miles on Labor Day, September, September 7. When I posted an update to Facebook, my sister who resides in Tipperary told me she had been there that past weekend. 

For those working on the challenge without relatives near by to share their real life photos, challenge organizers did a admirable job keeping everyone abreast of their progress, the view from the current location, and the significance of where we were. As was the case with the Illinois Endurance Challenge, street views allowed you to take in the (virtual) scenery.

Then when we reach certain milestones, we received a postcard via email that we could share on socially media or through email. Each post card email also contained several paragraphs describing the topography and local history. It proved to be an appreciable educational experience as well as a physical one. 

You all know I love when runs benefit a charitable organization or some greater good. This challenge checked that box as well. Every time a participant met a completion milestone – 20, 40, 60, 80, and 100% – a tree was planted “to help restore healthy forests in locations around the world.”  How cool is that?

I proceeded through my normal four-runs a week and completed the virtual course around the Iveragh Peninsula in southwest Ireland’s County Kerry on October 15. Roughly six weeks. I know some people who are still logging miles and I know a lot of people who would probably have completed the whole thing in a week.

I logged in my final miles and in less than 24-hours I had an email confirming my medal was in the mail. That’s why we do this, right?

The best part about these challenges is you can make them whatever you want them to be. I ran all my miles fairly slowly. At the same time I was also working on another challenge to run every street in town, but I’ll save that for another post.

If you’re looking for a challenge, I highly recommend going to The Conquerer Virtual Challenges and checking out your options. They are currently offering a dozen challenges of varying distances and locales. Challenges can be done independently or part of a team. You can choose your start date and deadline, which allows almost everyone to set a goal that is realistic.

Next up for us? Well, I’ve always wanted to do the Appalachian Trail. It’s 1968 miles from Springer Mountain, Georgia to Mount Katahdin, Maine. This time of year, I’m glad I’m only attempting to do it virtually. We’re giving ourselves the full 78 weeks to do it. We could have done it as a team, but Kurt just reminded me that a few weeks ago, I said I wanted to do the full distance myself. Of course I did.

Wear a mask to prevent facial recognition!

Wear a mask to prevent facial recognition!

(Plus a guide to the best ones for Runners)

Did I get your attention? Are you wearing a mask when you leave your house? In an announcement early this week, “U.S. CDC head says mask-wearing could get COVID-19 under control within 4-8 weeks.” (2020, July 14 from Reuters Health News, read the full text HERE).

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Race Review: Honda Miles Per Hour

Race Review: Honda Miles Per Hour

The Honda Miles Per Hour Run held this past Sunday was included in my list of 25 Chicago Must-Do Races published last year even though it hadn’t been held yet. I included it solely based on the concept and its timing on the race calendar. An indoor race in February in Chicago got my attention. The unique approach to racing further sweetened the deal. I registered for the inaugural event and hoped I would be able to give it a great review. I can.

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My Surf City Marathon Experience

My Surf City Marathon Experience

A review of Surf City Marathon Weekend from last year can be found HERE. Once again organizers did a superb job and I was happy to be back. For this post, I am not going to review (again) the attributes of the race weekend (not much new to say). Today, I’m going to focus on what was different about this destination race – namely that I ran the full Marathon for the first time after several years of doing the Half and my experience chasing a time goal.

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25 Chicago Must-Do Races to fill your 2020 Race Calendar

25 Chicago Must-Do Races to fill your 2020 Race Calendar

Chicago is a great place to run and it has many unique and fun races. Whether you live in or near The Windy City or have a reason to travel here, do mark your calendar for some of these must-do races. I haven’t done all of them (yet), but the ones I haven’t done come highly recommended by numerous sources in the Chicago running community. Wishing you happy miles…enjoy! Read more