New to virtual running? Here’s everything you need to know!

Posted 10th February 2017 09:59am by

Virtual running – where to start?

If you’re just getting into running or even a seasoned pavement pounder, the thought of attending a large running event can be quite daunting. Virtual runs allow you to complete a run wherever and whenever you like, alone or with friends – all you have to do is log your run using a website or mobile app.

We love virtual runs here at the British Hen Welfare Trust because we know our supporters have busy schedules and can’t necessarily travel to attend a large running event. Virtual runs are much easier – go at your own pace, in your own time and with whoever you like – and all whilst raising money to change the lives of thousands of hens across the UK.

Logging your run

You can log your run using a specialised app. There are a huge number to choose from so we have put together a small selection below that are easy to use.

Some apps allow you to share your run data straight from the app itself. With other apps, you may have to screenshot your completed run and submit the image as evidence – it sounds more serious than it is! If you use an Android phone, you can take a screenshot by pressing your power key and volume down key at the same time. If you use an iPhone, you can press your home and lock key at the same time.

The image will be saved in your photos/pictures/images folder (name changes, dependent on which phone you have). You can then email the image to the organisation you are running for as evidence.

Virtual Running Apps


This app and accompanying website allow you to map your exact route and then review on an interactive map. You can also track your time, distance, speed, pace, calories burned and elevation. The MapMyRun app is available for both iPhone and Android phones.

Fitbit with MobileRun

The Fitbit app with MobileRun enables runners and walkers to track their route, pace per mile (splits), distance and time. You can use the app both with and without a Fitbit device. This app is available on both iPhone and Android phones.


Perhaps the most “in-depth” app on the list, Strava allows you to really dive into your running data, as well as being a social networking tool. However, you can keep it simple and use the app to track your route, distance and time – perfect for virtual runs.

Walk Star

This nice and simple app will track your steps, distance travelled, calories burned and average speed. If you are a virtual walker more than a runner, this app is for you. Walk Star is available on iPhone.

Ready and raring to go?

As part of our Flippin’ Free Range Friday for Pancake Day, we are inviting our supporters to run or walk 5k to raise money for our Welfare & Education Centre. If 5k is too far for you, or not far enough, then you can pick your own distance – that is the beauty with virtual runs. Challenge yourself today and chip in for chickens! To join in with our Flippin’ Free Range Run, please email

If you have any further questions about virtual runs, virtual running apps or submitting your evidence, do feel free to get in touch.

Looking for inspiration?

Virtual Runner

This website offers a selection of challenges to complete under a variety of themes, from jogging with your dog to completing 1,000km in one year, to raise money for a number of charities. Once you’ve completed your challenge, you can win a fantastic medal! Each medal is designed to fit with the challenge theme. If you’re not sure where to start with virtual running, or you’re looking for an original and interesting challenge, Virtual Runner can help to get you started.

If you would like to use virtual runner to raise money for the BHWT, you can nominate us using this page.