We may not have realized it at the time, but when race organizers limited the field of the Tokyo Marathon, which was set for March 1, from 38,000 runners to just 200 or so elite athletes, they revealed the fate of running in 2020. Mass gatherings aren't appropriate for the times, so neither is racing. But running is about pushing through discomfort, so it isn't surprising that many people turned to it as a release from the state of things, and it's no wonder that racing found a new, virtual venue.
Virtual racing may not come with the cohort of competitors, the crowds cheering them on or the course's unique corners, but it can offer a more open, welcoming format. Take the SeaWheeze, a half marathon (and 10K) that draws over 10,000 runners to Vancouver to pound out a waterfront loop around downtown and Stanley Park — that race has gone virtual for 2020, which means that more people can sign up and gain access to a training plan and finisher's medal.
There's also limited-edition gear to go along with SeaWheeze. Created by race creator/sponsor/host Lululemon, the kit is always head-turning but typically only sold in its Vancouver stores for a single week surrounding the race festivities. Now that SeaWheeze is virtual, so is the collection, which is currently available online, no race-bib required.
This year's patterns are bold with a degree of Magic Eye trippiness (and that's meant in the best possible way). The line includes jackets, tights, shorts, tanks, tees and socks that won't be available anywhere else.