Jon Beeby has just returned from walking across America, raising money for the Tag Rugby Trust. Here at The Rugby Blog, we are in awe.
A total of 3,200 miles walked, 12 pairs of trainers exhausted, 1,232 litres of water consumed, 616,000 calories consumed over the course of nearly 5.5 million paces – it’s no wonder that the challenge was named A Step Too Far.
“Walking 40 miles per day is pretty brutal anyway, but getting through the weather and terrain was the hardest part.” ‘Beebs’ said when we spoke to him this week.
Traversing the Allegheny Mountains in Pennsylvania was one of one of the toughest stretches, whilst the ten consecutive days of rain in Ohio was also pretty tough. “Constantly trying to dry clothes is a nightmare.”
Beebs had the opposite problem in the heat of Texas: “Along the New Mexico and Texas border, it was 42 degrees and there was a 40mph headwind. It was like walking into a hairdryer”
The mental resolve required to get through each day, then get up in the morning and do it all again is admirable. “I will get through this day” was a constant internal dialogue, with each day split into four sections of ten miles each, and the relief at arriving on the west coast of America was incredible.
The walk was generously sponsored by King of Shaves, which funded the logistics, equipment and support vehicles required. “They’ve been amazing, and it meant that anyone donating to my fundraising efforts knows that every penny is going to a worthy cause.
That worthy cause is the Tag Rugby Trust, a charity that takes volunteers to developing countries to use tag rugby as a vehicle for social change.
Hutch’s report from his tour to Uganda last summer will give you more of the background to the charity – a hugely worthwhile cause.