Many citywide events have looked completely different in 2020, but for the OhioHealth Capital City Half Marathon & Quarter Marathon, adapting for participant safety allows the city’s biggest race day party to continue virtually.

The annual race will be held on Aug. 28-30, giving participants the opportunity to run on their own time from the safety of their own route. Whether Cap City is your first virtual race or you’re already virtual run pro, we’ve gathered some race day tips to ensure your finish at this year’s Cap City Half is just as exciting and successful as it would have been in-person.

You can check out more tips directly from Cap City Half Race Director David Babner on the @columbus_sports Instagram Story on Friday, Aug. 28, or on

Prep Properly

Preparation during race week can make all the difference, just like it does for an in-person race. In the days prior to your run, make sure you’re consistently hydrating and taking care of your body by getting enough sleep and fueling your body with nutritious meals. It’s also best to taper off the length your training runs leading up to race day, ensuring your legs are fresh when you need them most. 

Staying Safe

Cap City is keeping you safe by going virtual, but there are still safety measures to be aware of when racing on your own schedule. If you decide to run with a partner, try to social distance and minimize contact while you run. If you’re a solo runner, be sure to let your friends and family know when you’ve decided to complete the race and the route you will take. By bringing your cell phone along, making sure you’re carrying identification and having emergency contact information on your person, you’re prepped in case of emergency.

The beauty of a virtual race is that you can be flexible! If the weather is looking uncooperative during your planned run, adapt your schedule for a safer time. If your trail or sidewalk is too busy, it may be better to wait until you know you will be able to social distance and run worry-free.

Stay Consistent

As always, don’t change anything up on race day! Keeping things consistent with your practice sessions will set you up for success during your race. Choose comfortable, weather-appropriate clothing that you have run in before to eliminate the risk of discomfort. Stick with a familiar route you’ve trained on, including these Cap City virtual course maps presented by Byers or downtown routes from Experience Columbus, and don’t try to add any extra hills or flat stretches you’re not used to.

However, even with ample preparation, anything can happen. Consider placing your own fueling or aid stations along your route in case you need them during the run.

Celebrate Yourself!

Without the excitement of the large event, think about how you will stay motivated during your run. Check out the M3S Sports Cap City Half Marathon playlist on Spotify or have you friends and family cheer you on with a custom poster. Without a party at the finish line this year, don’t forget to grab a drink after your race and celebrate your achievement! You can also share your finish with the community by posting a photo to social media, tagging @capcityhalf, to ensure your hard work is seen and celebrated. Check out the OhioHealth Virtual Toolkit for more information.

This year might be different, but we know Columbus’ vibrant running community will embrace this virtual race like always. Good luck to all runners and walkers at this year’s OhioHealth Cap City Half & Quarter Marathon!