Brutus Buckeye poses with participants of the 2016 Run Down the Demons 5k. Credit: Courtesy of Shane Fowler

The Ohio State community is still finding a way to get its steps in, but not in the traditional fashion.

The Office of Student Life Recreational Sports will host its first virtual 5-kilometer race Saturday and Sunday.

“It is a way to connect with our participants and members and engage people in physical activity in a virtual way during this time,” Marci Shumaker, senior associate director for administration and programs, said.

Shumaker said there are typically many 5Ks, which are 3.1 miles, on campus in April, but because campus is closed due to COVID-19, Rec Sports is experimenting with new approaches to keep the community active.

Ali Talcott, campus programs coordinator, said the event is free, open to all and contributes to Rec Sports’ “How Do You 150? Spring Challenge,” which encourages Rec Sports members to participate in 150 minutes of exercise each week.

Talcott said the challenge runs through the month of April, and this 5K represents another way for students to reach their weekly fitness goal.

Shumaker added that the 5K is not exclusive to Ohio State, and anyone is welcome to participate.

Talcott said participants can complete the 5K anywhere, such as in a neighborhood, on a treadmill or in the house.

There is not a start or end time, Talcott said, so participants can choose to run or walk at their discretion. Participants are asked to fill out a short form with their information and the day they plan to participate.

Talcott encouraged participants to take pictures of their walk or run and tag Rec Sports on social media. The virtual 5K will take place Saturday and Sunday. The participation form is available on the Rec Sports website.