Coming up in 2021, the non-profit American Trail Running Association (ATRA) will celebrate its 25th anniversary. Founded in Colorado by Nancy Hobbs in 1996 with “Trail Times“, a newsletter and calendar for the emerging sport of trail running, it seems like just yesterday that we got our start in what is now a popular global sport.
To honor this milestone we’re planning a three-tiered virtual challenge and inviting all fans of the sport to participate. Trail runners around the globe can register and participate in a fun, virtual run challenge complete with leaderboards and weekly trail teasers. Registration will open August 25, for the ATRA Challenge 25, with the kick-off on September 1.
FitRankings will host the event and provide real-time leaderboards that will track mileage run per individual as well as by regions to encourage a “team” component during the challenge. A dedicated Facebook group – ATRA Challenge 25 – will be available for participants to interact sharing their videos, photos and stories to coincide with the first installment of the virtual challenge which runs until the end of the year. The second challenge is slated for first quarter 2021, and will have a winter theme, the third challenge is planned for second quarter 2021 with a spring theme.
One goal of the challenge is to raise funds for the many programs the American Trail Running Association currently offers and as such, several registration levels will be offered. Single challenge pricing is $25, while the three-pack challenge is priced at $65. Both these levels are tax deductible. T-shirts or medals will be available for an additional fee. A custom ATRA-branded Mudroom Backpack is included with the highest level of registration at $125.
Adam W. Chase, American Trail Running Association president, said of the challenge, “To fill the void of the lack of trail races ATRA has looked to safe, remote ways to embrace our off-road running community. We are excited to partner with FitRankings to explore challenges that gamify our passion of getting out in nature and pushing ourselves physically. The bonus of fundraising for an organization that represents trail runners’ interests should only add extra motivation to join these challenges.”
Patrick Hitchins, CEO FitRankings, added, “FitRankings has been running trails, developing software, and bringing to life unique virtual fitness experiences for communities since 2015. This partnership is a natural fit for our company, and will allow our team which is made up of many trail runners to dig deep into their passion to create an experience that is authentic for ATRA and the trail running community.”
Follow ATRA Challenge 25 with timely articles and photos at trailrunner.com. Participants in the challenge should follow their state and/or local health guidelines. Participants of all abilities are invited to join the challenge, but must be at least 16 years of age. Running, walking, and hiking can all be tracked in the challenges.
FitRankings is connecting the world through fitness. Based in Austin, Texas, FitRankings is a leader in digital fitness challenges and virtual racing. FitRankings technology features a universal platform that connects to the latest apps and wearables. FitRankings provides organizations enterprise software tools, security, and support to create authentic and engaging digital fitness experiences for their communities.