You’ve probably never heard of Ekiden – yet we all know what a Marathon is right? A bloody long run. Ekiden is a Japanese form of relay marathon where teamwork is key to completing the 42km marathon distance. This year, ASICS is calling on Aussies to take part in a global, virtual Ekiden.

You and your mates can complete the 42km in parts, without even needing to run together or see each other, so your mates in other states or countries, can help your team complete the journey.

The team you build can have up to six runners and while you can all do 7km, perhaps one of you is capable of 20 – that’s ok, you can share the run however you choose.

In the leadup to the race ASICS is making a range of training, coaching and expert tips to all registered participants and you can use your smartwatch from Apple, Garmin or Fitbit to track your run and rank yourself and your team on live online leaderboards when it all happens.

ASICS boss Yasuhito Hirota said “It may be inspired by one of Japan’s most famous race formats, but the ASICS World Ekiden 2020 really is an event like no other.”

“At ASICS, listening to runners of all levels and understanding their evolving needs is at the heart of everything we do. Right now, that means helping bring back the mental, physical and social benefits that come with team sport. But as life continues to change in future, we’ll keep on innovating new products, services and events that deliver the experiences people want.” 

Teams that enter and take part will also go into the draw for a chance to win an ASICS prize pack which includes shoes, shorts, t-shirt and socks.

This isn’t just about physical fitness, it’s about mental health, ensuring that people are connecting – even virtually with ASICS saying that half of all team sport players saying their mental health wellbeing has been negatively impacted by the recent disconnection from teammates.

Anyone can take part, all you need to do is register a team, download the RunKeeper app, and then log in during the run window (November 11 to 22) to take part!

Web: ASICS hub.