Running 60 miles (2 1/2 marathons) in a single day is an amazing feat, a testament to the ability of the human body and mind, and something very few people in the world can accomplish.
Now try to run that day after day, over mountains, past deserts, across plains and through towns big and small.
Well, John Wallace, a runner and West Seattle resident is attempting to break the Guinness World Record for crossing the USA by foot. To do this, he will have to run over 60 miles a day, every day, for 45 consecutive days. John will start this journey on October 10, 2010.
A lifelong runner who has put in miles every day for the past 7,578 days (and counting), John began planning this record-challenging run after his accounting position with a local sports company was dissolved. This may have been a blessing in disguise, as several years ago while on another epic run from West Port, WA to Savanah, GA, John learned about the Guinness Record for crossing the US.
This planted a dream of challenging the record, but with work and other obligations, John was kept from taking on this challenge. Now, luckily, he was free.
Over the past six months John has planned the logistics necessary for this epic run: what to eat, what to wear and how to get from the official starting point, Los Angeles City Hall to the finish, City Hall in New York City-- a whopping 2,900 miles away.
When will he sleep?
While John plans to get some shut-eye each night in his support van parked on the side of the road, the self-proclaimed night owl admits to resting while running.
"[During training] I've run with one eye closed. I don't recommend it in high traffic areas" John said with a laugh.
And of course, in order to take the record, John will have to complete this adventure in less than 46 days, 8 hours and 36 minutes, the current record. Set by Frank Giannino of New York in 1980, this amazing trans-continental record has stood for over 30 years.
Helping him along the way will be John's father who will be driving a support van over 4,000 miles during the record attempt.
While breaking the USA crossing record is John's main goal, his biggest motivation will be waiting for him back in Seattle.
"I'll be away from my wife and son, so I'll be running as hard as I can to finish, to get home sooner."
You can cheer John on by "liking" his Run USA page on Facebook, and by making a donation to support the non-profits he is raising money for: Make a Wish Foundation and the National Law Enforcement Officer Memorial Fund. To make a donation or to learn more about his run, visit www.runusa2010.com.
Good luck John! When you get to NYC, be sure to say hi to my family!