crossing usa, from LA TO NY

Beyond the finish line

    In 2014, Aidas Ardzijauskas embarked on a monumental journey, running 5000 km across the USA, from the Pacific Ocean in Los Angeles to the Atlantic Ocean in New York, following the famous “Route 66”, and completed it in 62 days.

    While the Vilnius resident, Aidas Ardzijauskas, may not have achieved the same level of fame as the iconic character from Robert Zemeckis' film 'Forrest Gump,' his undertaking was nonetheless remarkable, further glorifying Lithuania with his third long-distance run. While the character portrayed by Tom Hanks ran across the country for half a year, A. Ardzijauskas was determined to tackle a similar route in a record-breaking 45 days.

     "If one person conquered this distance, then I can do it too," said Aidas, referring to a book that inspired him to undertake this challenge, titled 'Roadbook: LA-NY footrace'. These footraces began in 1928 and were held nine times. In 1980, American Frank Giannino Jr. officially achieved a Guinness World Record by running across the USA in 46 days, covering a total distance of around 5000 km. Additionally, in 2016, accomplished ultra-runner, 29-year-old Nebraskan Pete Kostelnick, beat the record, running from San Francisco to New York in 42 days.

Across America: Aida's State-by-State Odyssey and Personal Challenges

In total, Aidas visited 11 states: Los Angeles (LA), Arizona (AZ), New Mexico (MN), Oklahoma (OK), Missouri (MO), Illinois (IL), Indiana (IN), Ohio (OH), Pennsylvania (PA), Maryland (MD), and New York (NY).
On average, Aidas ran for approximately 9 hours, covering around 80 km per day (roughly two marathons). He typically ran in the morning and at night due to temperatures sometimes exceeding 38 degrees Celsius.

    During their 70-day stay in America, Aidas spent 61 days running on asphalt, while his companion, traveling alongside in a car, took care of food, drinks, and other necessities. "If it weren't for my friend Martinas Romanovskis, who accompanied me throughout the entire run across America, the idea would probably have failed." - sayed Aidas

    Aidas mentioned that while traversing the American continent, suitable resting conditions weren't always available. Most of the time, he had to sleep in nature or in the car. 

    At the start of the run, he weighed 68.4 kg and experienced significant weight loss. When his weight dropped to a critical 58.4 kg after about three weeks of running, he had to prioritize his health. "I had to pause the run, take electrolytes, dedicate more time to sleep, choose appropriate food, and regain weight. I need to weigh 64 kilograms; that's the point where I feel good" he said, admitting that thoughts of food often occupied his mind while running.

"For this journey, I took 9 pairs of running shoes, and after running through deserts, villages, and mountains, I wore out 3 pairs." - Aidas

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The Woods
Cinque Terre
Mountains and fjords
Northern Lights
Nature and sunrise
Snowy Mountains