Online races or virtual runs are a popular way for runners to keep themselves active with a purpose amidst the pandemic period.

But none does it better than Spacebib, the leading online race platform, where runners are empowered to run anywhere and anytime they want, challenging themselves in numerous ingenious online running races supported by a strong online running community. 

Spacebib has caught the attention of runners all around the world, as their themes are creative and attractive, and at the same time, they live up to their mission of making sports participation easy and accessible for everyone.

We are excited to speak to some of the Spacebib runners who participated in their races to find out their thoughts and experiences of running a Spacebib online race.

1. Chang Foo Leong

Bio: Malaysian, 56 year-old, Anti-aging solutions Provider

Chang Foo Leong

Foo Leong started running in 2016 and joined a 10km race. After that, he got hooked up for 10km races and completed his first half marathon in 2018. He joined the Spacebib virtual run in 2020, and he runs/walks almost every morning to lead a healthy lifestyle.

RS: Why did you choose to run with Spacebib?

Foo Leong: I can run at my own time and distance and run anywhere of my choice. I am interested in joining the run because of the medal and T-shirt design and collection. My first register was the Run For Singapore 2020 Online Race, and that is where I learned about Spacebib.

RS: How has running an online race changed you?

Foo Leong: It encourages me to run/walk every morning and lead a healthy lifestyle as well.

RS: Would you invite or encourage your friends to join a Spacebib online race?

Foo Leong: Yes, some friends did ask about the virtual run, and I recommended to them to join.

You can follow Foo Leong on Instagram: @jchangfl

2. Rowena Apostol Plarisan

Bio: Filipino, 45 year-old, Domestic Helper

Rowena Apostol Plarisan

From the Philippines, Rowena loves to run for fun and started running at the age of 36 years old.  

RS: Why did you choose to run with Spacebib?

Rowena: Since this is my first time running an online race, I want to make it memorable.

Previously, I was searching for a running event ,and Spacebib appeared on my screen. I read the comments and realised there were lots of positive feedback from the runners. 

So I decided to register for the 7 Ancients Wonders Online Race 2020. After completing the race, I received my entitlements and was happy and amazed.

RS: How has running an online race changed you?

Rowena: Running an online race changed me a lot. I decided to run an online race to avoid crowded places. Instead, I go somewhere on my day off; it is better to run alone than to mingle with friends, which is not allowed at this time due to COVID-19. Running makes me feel better, get fit, have motivation and perseverance.

RS: Would you invite or encourage your friends to join a Spacebib online race?

Rowena: Yes, I would.

You can follow Rowena on Instagram: @rowena.apostol.98

3. Ng Ai Yin, Agnes

Bio: Singaporean, 43 year-old, Senior Lead Consultant, IT Security

Ng Ai Yin, Agnes

Agnes, a new runner, ran her first race back in January 2018 for Pokemon Fun Run. Due to insufficient training, she did not do well, but this spurred her on to try for others. 

So, her second race was in KL for the Nat Geo Run in Apr’18 – 15km distance. Her record was good for a beginner, and she took an interest to explore further. The third race was 21km for OSIM Sundown in May 2018. From then on, she never looked back and took part in 13-14 races and at least 6 virtual races every year, as well as competing in 3 overseas full marathons in 2019.

RS: Why did you choose to run with Spacebib?

Agnes: I became aware of Spacebib when I was registering for the 2XU SG Run (October 2018). As I was new to the scene, I wasn’t sure if it was safe to register my race from a third party site. However, it went through smoothly without a hitch, as it provided clear instructions, and the whole registration process was very easy to go through. 

For this year, despite the pandemic, I have not experienced any delivery delays or lack of response from Spacebib team. I have tried others before, but to be honest, Spacebib provides the best service, better quality and well-designed shirts, not to forget, very beautiful medals!

RS: How has running an online race changed you?

Agnes: For one, it keeps me on my toes (pun intended) to be consistent in my training schedule, as I can record my runs for the online races. It also keeps me motivated to constantly outdo myself, even when I’m not in physical races. 

It has definitely increased my focus and determination, and it has improved my lifestyle to a healthier one since online races are designed to let us achieve goals at our own pace and run anywhere during a specific period, compared to one-time physical races.

RS: Would you invite or encourage your friends to join a Spacebib online race?

Agnes: Definitely! In fact, a few of my friends have asked about the latest race: Solo Run, after I posted the medals and shirts on social media.

Afternote: I have to give my deepest thanks to Spacebib, because after signing up for Run For Singapore 2020, I have developed friendships with three running buddies in the Spacebib runners group.

Ever since then, we always find time to run together, leisurely or to complete Spacebib online races like the Mizuno Ekiden Online Race 2020. We have become good friends and continue to encourage each other to run better in every step of our lives!

You can follow Agnes on Instagram: @sophista_funk

4. Christopher Ho

Bio: Singaporean, 45 year-old, Church Pastor

Christopher Ho

Christopher used to be a middle-distance runner when he was younger and ran 1-2 half marathons back in his army days. He used to participate in long races and even biathlons, but has stopped going to such races because it’s always on a Sunday (which he was not able to commit) or very expensive with the long waiting time for the start of the race.

As such, he only continues to do some regular runs just to maintain his fitness and has not joined an organised race for more than 10 years. Before Circuit Breaker, he was running about 4km regularly 3-4 times a week to maintain his fitness. 

RS: Why did you choose to run with Spacebib?

Christopher: I heard about Spacebib from an invitation through a friend  who wanted to use the Run for Singapore Online Race 2020 as a motivation to kick start his slimming program. So, I joined him and participated in my first virtual run.

I wanted to finish the race before National Day, and then I got hooked to join more races to start praying for the nations and places I was running. Especially places where I know some local people and people who are struggling in these areas.

RS: How has running an online race changed you?

Christopher:  I’ve always wanted to do a marathon but have never done so. Through Spacebib, I actually did my own marathon in a single run for the Run to Tokyo Online Race 2020. It was my first run with some support from friends (also Spacebib runners), and I clocked a fairly good time in 4hrs 12 minutes.

Now I am also able to run an average of 300km a month. The online race has helped me to be more focused and consistent in my running. But the greatest change that it has done for me is to be able to use running for a good cause! 

This year, running online has led me to raise some funds for different countries where I have friends who are struggling financially. I am currently in my birthday challenge, where I have decided to clock 450km in 45 days. 

Since I started running online, it has been a great motivation to keep going. These are some of the motivations for me:

  1. Own time own target – Setting a personal pace and clocking the distance in accumulative days have allowed runners to achieve goals easier and improve through consistent runs.
  2. Runners community – The Spacebib runners community is really encouraging and inspiring. So, that helped us to motivate one another.
  3. Beautiful medals and T-shirts – Medals are really nice, and the finisher T-shirts are beautiful! 

RS: Would you invite or encourage your friends to join a Spacebib online race?

Christopher: Actually, quite a number of people have joined Spacebib since I started. Probably more than 10 people have signed up directly or indirectly through me, as I post my runs quite often. So, I have been invited and encouraging.

You can follow Christopher on Instagram: @christoho

5. Nancy B Tordil

Bio: Filipino, 40 year-old, Microbiologist

Nancy B Tordil

It all started when her sister was diagnosed with cancer. On her first day of chemo, Nancy decided to run and run on every chemo, as it helps her physically and mentally. Later on, she tried to run slow and made her first 1km, 5km, then her 10km.

After several runs, she joined her first official 10km race, then 21km. During this pandemic, she joined all the Online Cities challenge in Spacebib and challenged herself, and she loved it. Since then, most of her runs are ultra-distances, ranging from 50km single runs to 400km (accumulated).

RS: Why did you choose to run with Spacebib?

Nancy: My family loves to run, and we usually do our daily runs in the nearby PCN. To keep us more motivated, we decided to try to join an actual running event, so I searched online and came across Spacebib. 

Since then, we have joined and participated in most of Singapore’s major and charity running events. I chose the virtual or online running because I can plan my runs and can select schedules that will not compromise or affect my work and family time. I always make sure that I have a balanced and healthy life.

RS: How has running an online race changed you?

Nancy: Joining online races helps me develop and improve my physical capabilities and mental strength. I learned to challenge myself and achieved my personal best. It helps me improve my leadership skills.

Through online races, I met new friends who became my running buddies. Later on, we created a running group called Filipino Runners in Singapore (FRS). Members are from around the world, friends, families, colleagues and mostly beginners who are looking for running buddies or groups. Our aim and passion are to welcome and motivate new runners in the running world.

RS: Would you invite or encourage your friends to join a Spacebib online race?

Nancy: Yes, definitely. Usually, I buy online races as a birthday gift for my friends, and we celebrate our friendship thousands of miles away by running together virtually.

We always plan and select races where everybody is available, and we share pictures and videos during the run so that we can also see and feel our different running venues. This makes our run more exciting and enjoyable.

6. Kong Yee Chung, Darren

Bio: Malaysian (Singapore PR), 43 year-old, Project Executive in Housekeeping (Health Care)

Kong Yee Chung, Darren

Darren picked up running at 29 years-old, when he worked in Singapore. The first run he took part in was a 6km fun run. At that time, he saw a lot of people taking part in the competition category, crossing the finishing line and going up to the podium. This inspired him to take up running. He started taking 10km and 21km running events and even did a full marathon the following year.

Due to his work and insufficient training, he hurt his feet and got plantar fascia. The doctor advised him to stop running for a year. Due to the injury and his work, slowly, he gave up running more than 6 years ago.

RS: Why did you choose Spacebib, and how did you learn about Spacebib?

Darren: I saw the Spacebib Global Running Day online race. Then, I saw the finishing T-shirt, and it didn’t look that bad. I planned to take part. At first, I was unsure about joining an online race event, but I joined it after asking my friend. After I received my first entitlement, I fell in love with the quality of the medal and T-shirt.

RS: How has running an online race changed you? 

Darren: It changed my appearance, self-confidence and self-discipline. My weight hit 104kg last year in December 2019, and I started running in Feb 2020. I have registered for a total of 25 races (>140 runs & >1700km) in Spacebib. 

If I don’t finish the races that I have registered, it will be a waste of money. So, I must have the self-discipline to finish all the races by months. Now, my weight is 86.5kg, and it feels good to achieve my goal.

RS: Would you invite or encourage your friends to join Spacebib?

Darren: Yes I would.

7. Jarrel Benedict Cacdac

Bio: Canadian, 26 year-old, Media Production Associate

Jarrel Benedict Cacdac

Jarrel started running on almost a daily basis when he was 15 as a coping mechanism for stress and anxiety.

RS: Why did you choose Spacebib?

Jarrel: Since marathons and other sporting events have been canceled, I’ve been looking at virtual races to stay fit and help with my mental health. That’s when I found Spacebib.

RS: How has running an online races changed you? 

Jarrel: It has given me a bigger sense of motivation. It’s great that there’s a reward after completing an event, so there’s always something to look forward to.

RS: Would you invite or encourage your friend to join Spacebib?

Jarrel: I definitely would encourage friends and family to join Spacebib events.

You can follow Jarrel on Instagram: @jrlaugustbenedict

8. Jonathan Soh

Bio: Singaporean, 43 year-old, Bank Executive

Jonathan Soh

Running/jogging to Jon is the easiest, simplest, fuss free form of solo exercise. All he needs is to grab his running shoes and plug into his music.

Having said that, he never liked running since primary school and avoided running as much as he could. There were also periods of time that injuries took a toll and exercises ceased for years. He made the best use of the COVID situation to run a bit more regularly and use the Spacebib Online Race Platform to keep him focused and in check.

Jon is a slow runner, so his friends encouraged him to re-evaluate and adapt to his own style. He finds those encouragements help to push him further.

RS: Why did you choose to run with Spacebib? How did you learn about Spacebib?

Jonathan: It was the Run for Singapore 2020 race that got my attention. Since I was already running quite regularly, I thought, ‘Why not?’

The T-shirts were pretty cool, and I must say the Solo Run tees were better made, especially around the neck area compared to the Run for Singapore tee.

RS: How has running an online race changed you?

Jonathan: It didn’t change a whole lot for me since this is my natural lifestyle, that is to run at my own time and pace and solo.

For me, an online race keeps me focused on ‘challenge,’ an objective progressively for an extended period instead of a one-off event. This suits me, which was the primary reason I signed up.

RS: Would you invite or encourage your friends to join a Spacebib online race?

Jonathan: Yes, I would, and I have.

You can follow Jon on Instagram: @jon.soh

9. Vivi Natalia

Bio: Singaporean, 39 year-old, Housewife

Vivi Natalia

Vivi is a stay at home mom with 2 young kids. Since Circuit Breaker kicked in, she can’t go out as often as usual, and staying at home almost all the time with the kids meant that she needed to find some activities that could occupy them daily. 

Furthermore, because of fewer outdoor activities, she noticed that she’d put some weight. So, she wanted to find some activities to keep her and her family active. 

She started by following some online exercises, video games, exercise and virtual running. She searched some of the virtual running challenges from social media and website platforms that could fit their qualifications. Most importantly, it must be flexible and manageable but can motivate them to do it.

RS: Why did you choose to run with Spacebib?

Vivi: At first,  I fell in love with Spacebib – Run for Singapore’s finisher medal, which is beautifully crafted, but the flexibility of their challenge options and rules hooked me to sign up. 

I think those are really suitable for me because I’m not a professional runner. I’ve never thought about running as my exercise before because previously, I was more into yoga or Zumba.    

RS: How has running an online race changed you?

Vivi: Once I completed my first virtual challenge and received my entitlements, I was so happy and became more confident that I could accomplish my challenge.

Then I started looking forward to my next Spacebib challenge. I started looking forward, which track should I take for running? I was excited to find any apps that could capture my running history better and keep some photos of my running. 

Also, the finisher medal motivates me more to accomplish the challenge even faster. After completing a few challenges, I realised that I’d also lost some weight. So altogether, I felt like I was on the right track.

RS: Would you invite or encourage your friends to join a Spacebib online race?

Vivi: Of course, I did share my experiences and encouraged my friends to join because I think there is nothing to lose in joining one, what you will get are all the benefits for yourself. 

Also, some of my friends even asked me about this virtual running challenge, how I joined and why I joined after I posted some of the photos on my social media platform.

10. Mitch I. Gonzales

Bio: Filipino, 41 year-old, Enrichment Trainer

Mitch I. Gonzales

Mitch’s running journey is more about self-challenge since she had a terrible foot injury way back in her university days during a basketball game.

At first, she was not into running, but the COVID-19 pandemic is making a huge impact on health awareness, so she decided to start somewhere to get back to the fitness track like when she was younger.

RS: Why did you choose to run with Spacebib?

Mitch: I was amazed when I read that Spacebib accepts qualifying activities like walking and treadmill. It’s also convenient to track your progress. And lastly, you can finish the race anywhere!

RS: How has running an online race changed you? 

Mitch: I became more health-conscious, and I always look forward to checking how many kilometers I achieved in a day! Since I enjoyed virtual run as a kick-off to my wellness journey, I also signed up for gym workouts for optimum physical development.

RS: Would you invite or encourage your friends to join a Spacebib online race?

Mitch: Definitely, and I have invited them to run with me! So far, I have five friends who also signed up to run for Philippines and Singapore! Thank you so much, Spacebib! We had very good bonding after running!

Have you tried out a Spacebib online race yet? What is your concern about running an online race? We would love to hear which cool online races you are joining.

If you have participated in a Spacebib online race, you are welcome to join their inclusive Spacebib runners group on Facebook. You can send a request via this link.


Samantha Khoo

Samantha is an editor at RunSociety. A digital expert with a focus on the research and development of thought provoking and resourceful content, Samantha love Yoga and incorporate running in her weekly workout whenever she can.

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