8 tips to support your virtual marathon

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Seattle Marathon, like many other races, won't take place in person this year.  But if you plan to run 26.2 miles in a virtual event, be mindful that medical tents and nutrition stations won't be along the route. Dr. Mark Harrast, medical director of the Sports Medicine Center at Husky Stadium, provides advice on how to run your race safely.

  1. Respect the distance and be sensible. Listen to your body. If you wake up and don't feel well, run on another day.
  2. Set appropriate goals. Don't try to run your personal best this year as there will be no other runners to help you keep pace and no motivational support from spectators.
  3. Pick a route you're familiar with, preferably a loop course. Your family or pandemic pod members can create nutrition stations along the route.
  4. Be self-sufficient. Bring your nutrition and hydration and make it accessible along your course.
  5. Run with a pace or GPS watch to keep you on track.
  6. Race during daylight.
  7. Bring a face mask to quickly employ when you pass others at close distance, and hand sanitizer in case you stop at a bathroom.
  8. Don't forget to celebrate!

"Good luck to everyone and anyone who is running a virtual marathon specifically for the Seattle Marathon," Harrast says. "I think the biggest take home point is to enjoy and celebrate when you’re done. That’s important. It’s an accomplishment no matter how you run a marathon."

UW Medicine