Monday, March 18, 2019

The Cost of Joining the Ranks of Coast-to-Coast Runners and Walkers

Crossing the country on foot is something that is now being done by 10 to 20 people (on average) each year. When I ran across America in 2006, there were only two people who completed crossings that year -- myself and Christian McEvoy. There were six other people who made attempts in 2006 to either walk or run across the country; however, Christian and I were the only ones to successfully complete the task.

Shown in the photos accompanying this post are three motorhomes, all of which were custom painted for individuals who set out to cross the country on foot within the last 9 years. In essence, these were large mobile billboards to help promote the runners' efforts -- aiding in attracting public attention, media interviews, financial donations, and more. The runners had crews to help meet their needs and to always have at hand various conveniences, including: food, water, bathroom, bed, and basic shelter from the elements. My approach was quite different... to push everything I would need in a jogging stroller and to go coast-to-coast completely self-sufficient.

Sometimes I'm asked what the cost was for my run across America. With everything included, it was around $7,000. The bulk of that came out of my own pocket. There were certainly donations made and I will forever be grateful to each person that handed me some funds to keep the endeavor moving forward. It's safe to say that if you want to cross the country on foot without the big bells and whistles of a fancy motorhome and big crew, you can plan for a budget of $5,000 to $8,000 -- depending on the length of the route, the number of days you anticipate, and the number of hotels you stay in. I know of one man who is currently crossing the U.S. solo with a large budget of $12,000.

You certainly don't need to have a custom-painted motorhome with a full support crew including drivers, chefs, a physician, a masseuse, a public relations manager, and more -- as some of the past individual runners have had. In fact, if you are planning to cross the country on foot, I would encourage you to try and stay in as many homes as possible. During my 108-day crossing, I stayed in 45 residences -- that's nearly 42% of the total lodging that was needed for my crossing. It's a great way to learn more about the local communities you're passing through and to have a more personable adventure.

Keep Reaching For Life's Mileposts,

Paul Staso