Athletes, trail runners, and recreationalists have felt the impact of COVID-19 in a specific way. The spirit of in-person group sport, competition, and camaraderie has been diminished as the world adheres to regulations for health and safety. Several organizations have attempted to reinstate races virtually, but as single day 5Ks or fundraising runs, the races didn’t have lasting satisfaction.
XTERRA, a global off-road race and outdoor lifestyle company, created for triathletes, trail runners and outdoor adventurists, made a decision to renew the spirit of the race in a new way. They are offering outdoor enthusiasts what they’ve really been missing: a month-long, collective race to circle the globe (~40,000 km) as many times as possible.
When XTERRA’s technology partner, Phase2, heard about the initiative, they wanted to support and invest in the effort. In creating the custom leaderboard using a React frontend and Amazon Lambda backend, participants can engage in the friendly competition that keeps so many athletes motivated. On top of lending technical chops to the cause, Phase2 added it’s own team to get outside and move, actively participating and logging miles throughout the month.
This human-powered initiative pulls us away from our televisions, Zoom calls, garage gyms, or general couch-potato-ing. It allows us the opportunity to break the bad habits we’ve succumbed to during “stay at home” mandates and re-instill the healthy ones that have been enjoyed for years prior to the pandemic. No matter your location in the world or athletic ability, this global community event is open to anyone and everyone, for FREE.
Beginning July 15 and continuing through August 13, 2020, participants can “swim, skate, stroller push, bike, hike, walk, run, row, rollerblade, or just move (without a motor).” Each time a participant engages in an activity, they can log their distance online and watch the miles on the leaderboard accumulate. And, distance can be logged as an individual, as part of a team, or even as a relay.
“If there is one thing that really defines XTERRA it’s our global community, and our shared love for nature, adventure, and each other,” said Brian Hoven of XTERRA.“ We’ve really missed that connection these past few months and felt like this rally, this movement, could provide us all with an opportunity to be part of a healing celebration of the healthy, active, outdoors lifestyle.”
Healthy connection to others in our neighborhood, state, country, and around the world is what we need. While registration is free, XTERRA is offering the option to gather donations for Global Giving’s Coronavirus Relief Fund to assist communities around the world in their efforts to stop the COVID-19 pandemic.
To join this global community movement, register here to participate in the Rally Around XTERRA Planet Challenge.
Share your photos and progress with the community through #xterravr and @xterraplanet.