Brandon Parks: Creator of U.S. Road Running Virtual Races and Goal Program

https://www.facebook.com/USRoadRunning/photos_stream
Cour­tesy US Road Running

Ever been intim­i­dat­ed by the thought of stand­ing next to hun­dreds of well-trained run­ners, at the start­ing line of a race? Or per­haps you’d rather run a race in the com­forts of your home. You’re not alone and U.S. Road Run­ning might be per­fect for you. You run races, get times, earn medals, win prizes, and move up in the ranks…all on the inter­net with peo­ple you nev­er actu­al­ly need to wor­ry about meet­ing up with. It’s the most flex­i­ble race sched­ule ever; you run when you want and where you want. All you have to do is record your time and distance.

Bran­don Parks cre­at­ed U.S. Road Run­ning after he real­ized how much he loved to run (his wife made him start run­ning 5 years ago). Parks spent his career as a pro­fes­sion­al pilot for 19 years until this year, USRR grew so fast, that he decid­ed to make it his full time job. We had the oppor­tu­ni­ty to chat with Bran­don about his inno­v­a­tive speedy program. 

The Clymb: How does it work?
US Road RunningBran­don Parks: You can do a 5K, 10K, Half Marathon or just set a goal for the month. It can be an actu­al race or a race that you design on your own. We also post results and age group stand­ing for each of our races, so you can see how you are doing. All you have to do is sign up online and post your fin­ish time. We mail out the medals each month.

The Clymb: Is USRR only an online pro­gram?
Bran­don Parks: No. We put on the Movie Mad­ness Half Marathon Series, and the Shoe House 5 Mil­er Series. We just added to or events this year a Turkey Trot and Jin­gle Bell run. We are plan­ning to add six more races in 2014. Most of the races can be run vir­tu­al­ly also. We also do race man­age­ment, tim­ing and help oth­ers pro­mote their races. We have teamed up with a few run­ning club and help man­age their web pages. They include the York Road Run­ning Club, Har­ris­burg Area Road Run­ners Club and SOYO trail blazers.

The Clymb: What are some of the best prizes USRR has giv­en away?
Bran­don Parks: 
I think the best prize is the Garmin Fore­run­ner 310. We will be giv­ing away one every month until the end of the year. We have an Ambas­sador pro­gram also which is head­ed by Angela Sin­gle­ton from Gainesville, FL. The Ambas­sadors work with race direc­tors to help pro­mote their events and in exchange, we receive two race reg­is­tra­tions to their race that we give out on our face­book group page

The Clymb: The run­ning pro­gram of the site seems to be more pop­u­lar than the cycling or swim­ming pro­grams, why do you think that is?
Bran­don Parks: Yes, we just start­ed US Road Cycling and the Get In and Swim Pro­gram. This was request­ed by our run­ners. I’m hop­ing they’ll grow like our run­ning pro­grams. Hope­ful­ly in anoth­er year, US Road Cycling will be the same size as US Road Run­ning is now.

The Clymb: What is the most pop­u­lar month for USRR in the year?
Bran­don Parks: We just start­ed in Jan­u­ary, and every month it has been get­ting big­ger! In Octo­ber we have had over 2000 run­ners sign up for vir­tu­al pro­grams. We start­ed with 42 run­ners in Jan­u­ary. We also have a great Face­book com­mu­ni­ty where run­ners post their runs and pho­tos. I love to see pho­tos of groups and fam­i­lies that are using are pro­grams to Get Out and Run!

The Clymb: Is it easy to get involved with USRR? Do you have to pay any­thing?
Bran­don Parks: 
The US Road Run­ning Get Out and Run month­ly Pro­gram is free to join or you can sign up for $14.99 and receive a three inch 3D medal with your name, dis­tance and fin­ish time on it. All you do it sign up online and post your time. It’s your race, your loca­tion and on your time. We also have the Get Out and Run Team Chal­lenge every month which is $10.00 per run­ner and includes the online fee. The team Chal­lenge has been great for run­ning clubs, run­ning groups and fam­i­ly events. In Octo­ber we had over 1200 run­ners sign up for the Team Chal­lenge and over 600 for the month­ly Get Out and Run Program.

Learn more about run­ning from the com­forts of your home at http://USRoadRunning.com.