The Type 1 Diabetes Run Across America
2/1/2020 - 5/8/2020 (estimated)
The Plan: Run Across America—Solo.
On Saturday, February 1, 2020 I head east from Newport Beach, CA, planning to run 2830 miles in less than 100 days and planning to reach the Florida Space Coast in May 2020. I'll be supported by my wife/crew chief driving our support van.
I hope to make the fastest T1D crossing to date—and I also hope to complete the first ever solo run by anyone from Disneyland to Disney World. My route is shown below.
Type 1 Diabetic Transcontinental Crossings
Only two Type 1 diabetic individuals are known to have crossed the US on foot. Doug Masiuk ran 3400 miles across the US in roughly 217 days, averaging 16 miles/day, from May 20, 2012 to December 23, 2012.
Five years later, 10-year old Type 1 Noah Barnes and his family walked 4240 miles in roughly 343 days, averaging 12 miles/day, from Key West to Blaine WA between January 1, 2017 and December 9, 2017, setting the record for the youngest person to cross the US on foot.
Come Walk, Run or Just Say Hi!
Of course! Any distance—one mile, 5 miles, you name it—is welcome.
If you're slow...
Me too. You don't run this many miles at a marathon pace. So I'm almost certainly slower than you. My average running pace is about 15 minutes/mile.
If you walk...
Me too. I run a lot, but I walk too. You'll fit right in.
If you just want to say hi—no walking or running...
That's great too. I would still love to meet you.
Don't take it personally when I keep moving, though.
If I stop and talk, I won't finish the day's miles on time. (Which means not enough time to eat or sleep. Which is bad.)
100% yes, and they're welcome to run/walk as long as they are old enough to do so safely.
What you cannot do is crawl along behind us in your car at 3 mph.
The best thing to do is "leapfrog" ahead - drive partly ahead to a safe pull-off, usually right in front of our van. Then park and wait for them.
When they catch up, you can leapfrog ahead a little more—or pick them up, if they're done.
YES! Feel free. The live tracker shows where I am at all times during each day's run. It's perfectly fine to just show up. You don't need to check with us in advance at all!
We're out here all day, every day, unless it's a rest day or weather or something unexpected changes our plans. Just check the T1Determined Facebook page or the website for any status updates.
You can also DM the page on Facebook if you have a specific location question.
No. You'll need to arrange your own transportation. The crew van's priority is to stay with Don and make sure he has what he needs.
What most people do is either:
- Have someone drop them off at Point A and then wait for them at Point B where they plan to finish
- Park their car at Point B on the route, run back to meet Don at Point A, and then finish running when they reach the car they left at Point B
- Take an Uber or cab—but if it's a remote area, check in advance to make sure this is even a possibility. Uber has a bad habit of listing many small towns as "covered" by Uber drivers when it's actually difficult or impossible to find one.
Feel free to DM me if you're considering this. Know that out here, you're on your own: no police blocking traffic, no aid stations, no medical tent, no portalets, no race officials.
We can't provide sleeping arrangements, food, transportation or first aid or medical help. In remote areas, hospitals are a couple hours away.
Things to consider:
- I'm running on actual roads, often just a few feet away from loud, fast traffic, for many consecutive hours
- Sleeping arrangements—sleeping bag, your pup tent, a motel, etc., in weather that may be a lot colder or hotter or humid than you're used to
- Meals and snacks—how will you feed yourself, especially if no restaurants or convenience stores are handy
- How will you get here and get home, how will you get to the route every day if you're staying at a motel
- Bailout plan—if you have to stop part-way for any reason.
If you're Type 1, you'll also need to:
- Bring all your own medical supplies
- Bring your own fast carbs and glucagon
- Have a specific plan for early detection of overnight lows
I love to meet folks while I'm running during the day. Honestly, I thrive on it. It keeps me going.
If you want to meet for dinner at the end of the day, check with Leslie on the day's schedule to see if that's possible.
Once I'm done, I usually eat a fast dinner so I have as much time as possible to get ready for the next day's run and sleep as much as I can.
I only plan on one rest day every 12 days or so. These days are for constant eating and napping, restocking supplies and doing everything I can to recover for the next couple weeks of runs.
Unfortunately, no time on this trip for leisurely visits, long meals or sightseeing.
Seeing a runner and crew van on a highway is already pretty distracting for drivers.
Please think twice about doing this and make sure you're not jeopardizing your safety, mine, my wife's, or other drivers.
I optimized my route for our safety. I personally believe riding bikes on active highways is not safe, even though it's generally legal. This definitely isn't a safe cycling route in many areas and you should vet it for yourself before riding any of it.
Note that I run against traffic, whereas bike laws in my experience generally call for riding with traffic, which means your back is to high-speed highway traffic.
What I really value most, as corny as it sounds, is your company.
The van is well-stocked and we're not generally in need of supplies.
I'm self-funded, and you can contribute to me directly if you want to.
My ultimate dream is to provide an free, practical resource for people right after diagnosis - to close that last mile between "You're diabetic" and "How will I ever do anything active again?"
Right now, you can point people to one or all of these Facebook groups: Type 1 Diabetic Athletes, TypeOneRun and its many local chapters, the local chapters of my own Diabetes & Exercise Alliance, and the Diabetic Ultra Endurance Athletes Facebook group. There are many more, around the world, but these will get any T1 off to a good start.
You can also support one of these non-profits that help us thrive, fight discrimination, and look for better treatment and cures.
When will the Type 1 Diabetes Run Across Texas pass through my town?
Cities & Dates (Subject To Change)
California 2/1 - 2/9
El Casco CA
Palm Springs CA
Desert Center CA
CA-62&177, Mojave Desert
Arizona 2/10 - 2/26
Green Valley AZ
New Mexico 2/27 - 3/1
NM-9 & A-005 NM
Texas 3/2 - 3/31
El Paso TX
Hueco Tanks TX
Salt Flat TX
TX / NM Border
Big Spring TX
Colorado City TX
Tye / Abilene TX
Mineral Wells TX
Sulphur Springs TX
Mt Pleasant TX
Dalby Springs / Ward Creek TX
Arkansas 4/1 - 4/6
El Dorado AR
Mississippi 4/7 - 4/14
Alabama 4/1 - 4/6
Georgia 4/24 - 4/25
Florida 4/26 - 5/8
St. Cloud FL
More Info About The Route & Transcontinental Runs
History of Transcontinental Crossings
Only a few hundred people have ever crossed across the United States ocean-to-ocean at any speed since 1918, the first year paved roads connected the American coasts.
In fact, many trans-con runners and walkers still use the remnants of the 100-year-old Bankhead Highway/Dixie Overland Highway for transcontinental runs, as it was the first all-season transcontinental highway.
Roadside America is like nothing else! Our less-traveled route includes:
- Rice, CA's famous "shoe fence" and faraway-to-everywhere sign
- Vidal Junction, CA's "last chance gas" -- the most expensive gallon of gas you'll probably buy in the US
- Phoenix and Scottsdale's famous spas
- The desolation of Arizona's Mojave and Sonoran deserts
- El Paso's alligator sculptures
- Long-abandoned motels, cafes, and bus stations in west Texas recalling turn-of-the-century salt mining operations
- Guadalupe Pass, the tallest point in Texas
- Potassium mines and uranium enrichment facilities of south and eastern New Mexico
- Loraine, TX's surreal abandoned downtown, where mature trees have grown straight up through old storefronts
- Sulphur Springs, TX's glass restrooms and Monty Python Silly Walks crosswalk
- The small-town charm and natural beauty of southern Arkansas
- The beautiful Mississippi River crossing in Greenville, MS
- Leland, MS, "birthplace" of Kermit the Frog
- BB King's hometown of Itta Bena, MS and location of the famous blues "crossroads"
- Rural Alabama's roadside scrap metal, pecan, and fruit stands
- Florida's fish camps
- Dunnellon, FL's statue of the Blues Brothers
- The only pedestrian-safe roads into the Magic Kingdom (hint: it's near cast parking)
- And a final run to the finish over Melbourne, FL's beautifully scenic pedestrian bridge to the Atlantic Ocean's beaches
It promises to be one heck of a trip.