FAQ

HOW DO I REPORT MY TIME?

For tracking your distance and time, you can use whatever app or system that works best for you. All we need is the finish time. We use the honor system to verify results, so if you say you did, we have no reason to not believe you.

To report your finish time, go to our results page on your RunSignup account. The deadline to report your finish time to receive your finisher’s medal is April 30, 2021.

WHAT IS THE COAST GUARD RUN?
Hosted annually in Elizabeth City, North Carolina, a designated Coast Guard City, the Coast Guard Half Marathon and Guardians of the Atlantic 5K offer a unique running experience. Participants take a running tour of the charming, historic town, run on-base at Base Elizabeth City, through HBCU Elizabeth City State University, and end back in the historic downtown district. Runners are supported by the men and women of the United States Coast Guard.
HOW IS THE USCG INVOLVED IN THIS EVENT?

This Coast Guard Half Marathon and Guardians of the Atlantic 5K are Coast Guard sanctioned events. The race was created in collaboration with our local base, Base Elizabeth City, and has gone through all of the appropriate and necessary steps to gain approval from Trademark and Licensing from the United States Coast Guard.

WHERE'S THE REST OF MY SWAG?

Got your shirt but not your bib, or vice versa? All swag ships separately. You should have received an email from our partners at Virtual Running Club with a tracking number for your shirt, but if you didn’t you can reach them at support@VirtualRunningClub.com.  Heads up, the t-shirt is a package, but the bib ships in an envelope so don’t forget to check the mailbox! Since the bib ships in an envelope and goes through the mail, there is no tracking info. 

Medals do not ship until you’ve reported your time AND the race has ended. please refer to the Registration Dedlines below for shipping dates.

Registration Deadlines

Register by February 14, shirt/bib arrives by March 6

Register by February 27, shirt/bib arrives by March 22

Register by March 6, shirt/bib arrives by March 29

Register after March 6, shirt/bib ships around 3rd week of April

WHAT IS AN INTERACTIVE FINISHER'S MEDAL?

The medal has moving parts! The tail rotor of the helo spins and the Rescue Swimmer moves up and down. It’s not a virtual

 medal, it’s the real deal and will ship right to your door after you finish the race and report your time. Whether you complete the half marathon or the 5k, this awesome medal is all yours!

WHAT ARE VIRTUAL AND HYBRID EVENTS?

A virtual race provides participants with a goal to complete at any location and at any time within the event window. Participants still receive swag such as t-shirts and finisher medals after reporting their finish time. Above all, virtual events allow for athletes all over the world to participate in a “group” activity safely until large in-person events can happen again. The inaugural Coast Guard Run offers a half marathon or 5k distance that can be completed anytime from March 6 to the reporting date of April 30, 2021.

In 2022, we will produce both a traditional, in-person event plus offer a virtual option for runners who may not be able to travel here to participate in person – defined as a hybrid event.

DOES THE RACE SUPPORT A CHARITY?

As an inaugural event, all proceeds from 2021 registrations and sponsorships will be used to help make the 2022 hybrid event bigger and better. This event is being produced in partnership with the USCG, and although there is no charity this year, we are excited to support a Coast Guard related charity in future events!

WHY IS THE 2021 INAUGURAL EVENT VIRTUAL?

After careful consideration by Visit Elizabeth City of the continuing coronavirus threat, and potential impacts, the difficult decision was made to reschedule the event from its original date in September 2020. Above all, the safety of our community, participants, staff and volunteers continues to be a priority. However, we’re excited to offer a virtual option in March 2021 and welcome runners in-person and virtually for a hybrid event in 2022.

HOW IS A WINNER DETERMINED?

Due to the nature of the race, runners can complete their 5K or half marathon from wherever they are, which doesn’t allow for a level “playing field” for participants. For example, a runner in a mountainous region is going to have a much different running experience and challange than one running at sea-level.  For this reason, there are no technical winners as in 1st, 2nd, or 3rd place.

That said, we like to think everyone in this inaugural event is a winner!

HOW DOES A VIRTUAL RACE WORK?

Simply register for your race and choose the swag items that you would like to receive, complete the distance of the registered race anywhere you desire (yes, even on a treadmill!), and report your finish time by April 30, 2021! After that, all swag items are shipped directly to you, so there is no in-person requirement.

VIRTUAL COAST GUARD RUN DETAILS

The inaugural Coast Guard Run will offer the option to select a half marathon or 5k distance that can be completed anytime from March 6 to the reporting deadline of April 30, 2021.

To honor the spirit of traditional races, we require that runners can only earn their medal by finishing their race. We verify that a race is finished using the honor system. Therefore, participants must report their finish time to their RunSignup account (created during the registration process & tied to the email address entered).

Run your race wherever you choose – on a treadmill, in a park, on a local track, or on your usual jogging route. The great thing about a virtual race is you can run on your own time and complete the race in intervals that work best for you. In other words, whether you finish the half marathon or 5k on March 6, 2021 or run a half-mile each day until you reach the virtual finish line is up to you! Similarly, participants can take as long as they need to finish their race and can do it however works best for them, so long as time is reported by April 30, 2021.

Most participants walk, run or hike their race and ideally they are using their own power to go their distance, but we leave room for individual adaptation where necessary. Biking, swimming, rowing, etc. are welcome.

CAN I RUN AS A TEAM?

Yes! We welcome (and encourage) team registrations to add some friendly competition to the race. Round up members of your local Coast Guard community, run as a company team, or just you and a few friends. 

During registration, you will have the option to “create a team” or “join a team” if you choose to do so. Find established teams here

Messages regarding the race come from support@virtualrunningclub.com. Please add that address to your safe list.

HOW DOES THE REFERRAL PROGRAM WORK?

Referrers will receive a $10 refund for every 3 referred registrations! Referred registrants must use the unique referral link provided to you at registration for you to be eligible for the automatic referral refund.

CAN ANYONE PARTICIPATE?

Absolutely! You do not need to be a United States Coast Guard member or have any military affiliation to participate. We encourage participants of all ages and abilities.

WHY IS ELIZABETH CITY, NC HOME TO THIS EVENT?

We’re glad you asked! We actually wrote a whole blog about it here. Elizabeth City, NC is home to one of the largest USCG bases in the country and a designated Coast Guard City. Until now, the United States Coast Guard was the only branch of the U.S. military without a named road race. As the host of the event, Visit Elizabeth City is excited to celebrate our Coastie community and host this inaugural half marathon to Coast Guard members, family, and supporters across the country. No federal or Coast Guard endorsement implied. Our quaint, waterfront town offers picturesque water views, friendly locals, and a place to call home for so many of our Coast Guard men and women. We hope you’ll join us in celebrating virtually in 2021 and in-person in 2022!

MEDALS/WATER BOTTLES & SHIPPING

Medals must be earned by finishing the race and medals do not ship until after the end of the race – even if the finish time is reported early. This helps us maintain the spirit of the traditional race experience. After the last official race day (March 31), we’ll begin shipping medals to those participants who reported their finish time. The reporting deadline is April 30, 2021. All water bottles will ship with finisher’s medals.

The first 500 runners will receive a free water bottle (value $12) with their registration, courtesy of our Presenting Sponsor: AdeNation!

All swag ships separately. Shirts & Medals ship with a tracking email from support@virtualrunningclub.com. Bibs are sent first class with a stamp. All items will ship according to the timelines listed for each item on this page.

SHIRTS/BIBS & SHIPPING

Shirts and bibs are printed specifically for each participant. Shirts and bibs ship regardless of whether your time is reported. All swag ships separately. Once a registration is complete (paid for), it cannot be changed. Registrations are processed according to the timelines below. Due to manufacturing and international shipping constraints, if the color of the shirt you select is out of stock, the next closest color will automatically be substituted for you.

Register by February 14, shirt/bib arrive by March 6

Register by February 27, shirt/bib arrive by March 22

Register by March 6, shirt/bib arrive by March 29

Register after March 6, shirt/bib ship around 3rd week of April

All swag ships separately. Shirts & Medals ship with a tracking email from support@virtualrunningclub.com. Bibs are sent first class with a stamp. All items ship according to the timelines listed for each item on this page.