5 Benefits of Virtual Runs for Employees

8 min read
Published on 18 November, 2021

Running is a popular exercise that provides maximum benefits. It helps to improve cardiovascular health, burn calories, and build strength. Running is a terrific exercise for employees to kick start their day!

We all know stress and anxiety are pervasive, especially in the workplace. It is often challenging to stay positive as the mind gets bombarded with many negative thoughts due to stress.

Incorporating fitness programs into the working culture to boost employee retention and productivity. Well, running is one great example of cardio exercise that helps to cope up with stress.

Before the Covid 19, Pandemic, individuals could participate in many running events. Moreover, because of the pandemic, there have been a lot of restrictions. Hence running outdoors was not a safe option.

Virtual runs became more popular when organizers canceled running events. Now, fitness enthusiasts are participating in the virtual running to stay healthy and strong.

Running too many people becomes a lifestyle rather than just a way to lose weight or get fit. When you feel like you can't carry on, always remember that running, even for just half an hour, will add to your health but also your mood and general well-being
-Anonymous

Read our blog on: 9 Terrific Tips To Start Running To Work

What is a Virtual Run?

A Virtual run is a race that runners can run from any location at their own pace.

It is an excellent option for those who want to stay fit, be active all around the year, and run for a good cause.

Virtual runs don't have to be solely running for their purpose, but they could be for a social cause. Say for example

  • Virtual Runs for creating awareness about Breast Cancer
  • Running for donation/charity
  • Creating awareness about Mental Health
  • Creating awareness about the importance of Physical Fitness

Runners can also post their race results online along with their fellow athletes after finishing running. Here they will find many people with mutual interests and find a sense of encouragement, motivation, and inspiration.

Suggested Read :How Sleep Deprivation Affects Work Performance

How did it start?

Many years ago, some runners requested race directors to organize online running events instead of physical races. When online running events became a massive success, few runners shifted to virtual running.

Later many fitness enthusiasts took inspiration and started virtual runs too.

Slowly and steadily, the term VIRTUAL RUN became through word of mouth and social media trends.

Eventually, virtual running races shifted to a mass audience. Then, it became viral because of its flexibility.

Let's just say it and be done with it. Racing hurts. But here's another truth: having put in the effort to prepare for a race and then not giving it your all hurt even more. The first kind of hurt goes away in hours or a day. The second kind of hurt can last a lifetime.
-—Larry Shapiro, author of Zen and the Art of Running .

Different people have different reasons for racing, but one is simply the incentive to get out and run, increase mileage and feel good.
-Hal Higdon, author, and runner

Be confident in the work you did to prepare for the race. Take a look back at your training logs to remind yourself that you've done everything possible to prepare. The race is the fun part, where you get to see the hard work pay off. Enjoy it.
-Desiree Linden, U.S. Olympic marathon star

Things To Know Before Doing A Virtual Run

For any race or run, it is essential to train. Be it a long-distance run or short distance, employees need to prepare. A 5k run would require less training than a half or full marathon.

It is crucial to plan things for the run, keep track of it, and map the route before employees start running. They can also plan how to get snacks and water along the way.

Here are some essential things employees must carry before starting the virtual run:

  • Extra clothes
  • Small Lunch
  • Keys, credit cards, and other essentials
  • Lightweight garment sleeves
  • Waterproof jacket (In case it rains)

Tips for packing food :

  • Carry light lunch like berries with paper towels and stuff in the backpack. Put a rubber band so that it doesn't come out.
  • Keep two bananas inside pockets(of your backpack) and wrap fruits in a clean film to avoid spoiling the clothes.

Suppose want you are looking for a fitness solution! Why don't you download the Vantage fit app

The App helps to boost employee wellness and workplace wellness.

The Vantage Fit App will help you to track your health and fitness achievements. It will also offer guidance to carry out specific workouts and training regimes from a mobile device.

Suggested Read : Mood Meters: A New Corporate Health And Wellness Initiative

Running for a Good Cause.

Virtual runs can be done for raising money or for a good cause. The money is raised for those who do not have enough in them for their treatment. Runners can register online and go through the details if the race details aren't precise.

There couldn't be any better opportunities than this; runners should run and support a great cause.

There is no better feeling than doing well while you are doing good. If you want to meet the nicest, most caring people in your field, get involved with charity work. The thankless hours that go into planning charity dinners, running a carnival, and gathering donations for silent auctions are noticed and appreciated.
-Jay Samit

A great example would be like Running for physical and Mental health awareness

It supports a healthy lifestyle and encourages people to stay fit. And when it comes to mental health, it includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being.

The way we think, it puts a significant impact on our thoughts. It helps to determine our stress, anxiety, and other healthy choices.

It also encourages people to talk about mental health openly and why it is essential at every stage of life from childhood, adolescence, and adulthood.

There is something magical about running; after a certain distance, it transcends the body. Then a bit further, it transcends the mind. A bit further yet, and what you have before you, laid bare, is the soul.
-Kristin Armstrong

I hated every minute of training, but I said," Don't quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion
-Muhammad Ali

As every runner knows, running is about more than just putting one foot in front of the other; it is about our lifestyle and who we are
-Joan Benoit Samuelson

The Rise of Virtual Run Before Covid-19

Before Covid 19, everything was shut, and many runners couldn't train properly. At the same time, some of them couldn't pursue due to do the fear of Covid 19, while others managed to follow, running faithfully.

But the majority had to give up running only due to pandemics.
And this was the time where runners have signed up for marathons or half marathons that could be done from any location.

As more people began to participate in Virtual runs, it became a huge success.

Running is hard for a reason - the results are boundless, whether you're a beginner just getting started or a keen runner exploring the benefits of running gels and planning for ultra-marathons
- Mo Farah

Fitness undoubtedly changes many lives for the better and makes you work harder to achieve the best version of yourself
-Ronald Rook

Virtual Runs Can Be Creative

Runners may race on their backyard treadmill; some may run in the streets. They may get creative, like selecting a particular path or recommendations from the public health authorities.

Runners can also select an easy route and set their own running pace.
If it's a long marathon, runners don't have to run a stretch to avoid overstraining. They can always break up the miles!

Running taught me valuable lessons. In cross-country competition, training counted more than intrinsic ability, and I could compensate for a lack of natural aptitude with diligence and discipline. I applied this in everything I did
-Nelson Mandela

How Can Employees Benefit While Participating In A Virtual Run?

Virtual runs have excellent benefits for employees. It increases serotonin and improves general well-being. When employees feel more energized, they are more efficient and effective at work.

Let us take a look at some of the health benefits:

1. More Flexibility:

Unlike traditional running, where the individual has to participate physically in an outdoor setting, virtual races offer flexibility as employees can complete the run outdoors or indoors.

2. Cost efficiency:

The costs associated with virtual runs are less compared to traditional runs as there are no travel costs. In standard runs, individuals have to run to a particular place to participate.

In virtual runs, employees don't have to interact with the crowd or interact with fellow runners.

Running is a great metaphor for life. You set a goal, and then you get to work. How well you do is a direct reflection of how hard you work. It's a mental game, too. There are setbacks along the way, but the true test of a runner is how you overcome and push past them
-Ivanka Trump

3. Boosts performance:

Employees have a lot of work pressure, and it becomes pretty challenging to work. The mind gets clogged, and negative thoughts might pop up.

Employees cannot work when their mind is engaged somewhere else,
Introducing fitness programs like virtual runs will help keep their energy level high and make them happier. When employees are more satisfied, they perform better.

Suggested Read : 8 Surprising Benefits Of Introducing Meditation At Work

4. Coping up with stress:

Stress is pervasive in the workplace. When there is less stress in the working environment, employees feel free to work, boosting productivity. Most employees get triggered by stress due to work deadlines.

As we know, fitness helps in overall workability.
When employees engage in virtual runs, it will help to improve their state of mind, making their stressful work easier to handle.

5. Saves Time:

Unlike traditional running, one has to travel from their home to reach the starting location of the running event. Employees do not have to worry about transportation in virtual runs, as running can be done from any location.

This, in turn, saves time and also money. When ample time is saved, employees can give more time to their work and become productive.

Moreover, employees also lead a healthy lifestyle with their professional duties. It becomes the cherry on the cake.

Some Virtual Run Quotes That Can Help Employees To Live A Healthy Lifestyle

You have to wonder at times what you're doing out there. Over the years, I've given myself a thousand reasons to keep running, but it always comes back to where it started. It comes down to self-satisfaction and a sense of achievement
-Steve Prefontaine

That's the thing about running: your greatest runs are rarely measured by racing success. They are moments in time when running allows you to see how wonderful your life is
-Kara Goucher, Olympic long-distance runner

Running is alone time that lets my brain unspool the tangles that build up over days...I run, pound it out on the pavement, channel that energy into my legs, and when I'm done with my run, I'm done with it
-Rob Haneisen, runner

If you run, you are a runner. It doesn't matter how fast or how far. It doesn't matter if today is your first day or if you've been running twenty years. There is no test to pass, no license to earn, no membership card to get. You just run
-John Bingham

Conclusion

Virtual runs are a terrific alternative to traditional running.
Runners can run a virtual race on their own.
They don't have to go anywhere and but step out of their front door.

Unlike traditional running, runners have to go to a particular location to participate in the event.
Virtual runs have no specific path or location for running.

If employees are into running, they must try out the virtual run, which is cost-effective and productive simultaneously!
Let us know your experience in the comments below!

This article is written by Anangsha Alomyan who is a content marketer at Vantage Circle. Apart from writing, Anangsha plays the piano, acts, raps and does photography. Since childhood, she has been into sports and brought laurels across the country. An adventurer by heart, she loves to explore new routes across the Himalayas. To get in touch, reach out to editor@vantagecircle.com

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