Archive for February, 2011


Saturday, February 26th, 2011

Feb. 27th 2011  Macomb to Carthage, Il.  41.9km = 26 miles.

Tonight I am the guest of Chet and Ruth. Wonderful people Thanks so much :)

Feb 28th 2011  Carthage, Illinois to Wayland, Missouri. 44.7km = 27.8 miles





Tonight I am the guest of Pastor Dan and Heidi Thanks for a lovely evening :)

Mar. 1st 2011. Wayland to Memphis, Mo.  54.1km  = 33.6 miles

Tonight I received a complimentary room in the Oak Ridge Motel, Memphis, Mo. Thanks so much Viola :)

Mar 2nd. Memphis to Lancaster.  36.7 km = 22.8miles.

Tonight I am the guest of Boyd and Connie.  Thank you so much :)

Mar 3rd 2011 Lancaster to Unionville. 45.9km  =  28.5 miles.

Tonight I am the guest of the town of Unionville who put me up in the Alamo Motel.

Thanking you so much :)

Total for 109 road days = 4878.7 km = 3,031.5  Miles. 115.6 Marathons.


Last Saturday for my rest day I ran and walked up and over the muddy trail hills. I completed just one of the  four 7.1 mile loops  of The Kennekek Road Runners Fat Ass fun run in Danville. I ran it  gingerely just to be part of the spirit of the event. It was great having a laugh with some of the runners. I ran it with caution as I didn’t want to slip or fall.

Running with the Buffffalllloooeess!

 I felt that some of the inclines a mountain goat would have shook his head at. On the trail just after crossing over one of the rickety plank bridges which straddled the ankle deep icy cold water I met my friend Tracy Thomas whom I have competed against many times in ultra races in Arizona and Texas. She runs for The Second Wind Running Club who along with Kevin and Janet’s club, The Kennekek Road Runners.

Running with Tracy

All the runners here have a fascination with the buffalo. In fact the greet each other whether it be on the trail or in the street with shouts of  BUFFFFFALLLLLOOOOO!
The Buffalo Warrior is a symbol of big medicine. This awesome creature, so rare, so beautiful, lets his divine presence be known to all who follow. Leading the herd over the snow covered meadows, he is master of all he surveys. This magnificent animal fears nothing except extinction of his own kind.

Back at the house Kevin excelled that night by preparing a huge meal of bangers ’n mash! He had gone to the trouble of googling the recipe as he wanted to cook a unique meal for me. Top marks Kevin!

Next morning was Sunday so I set out for Champaign with Kevin. He was going to run about 16km/10miles with me till we got to the Nugget bar. We set out from the Illinois state line where I finished on Friday. We ran through old and new Danville Kevin pointing out the court house where Abraham Lincoln practised law. The area is steeped in Lincoln history.
Kevin a success entrepreneur also pointed out the 3 buildings he owns. His own office block, a building he is leasing to a bank and another office building.
” It wasn’t always like this Tony… ”
” I came from down south Mississippi way. And when I was in school the other kids used to laugh at me. You see our family was very poor and could not afford new clothes.
” They got second-hand clothes for me and my brothers and sisters.
” Well the other kids at school used to make fun of me saying things like…
” Give me my shirt and shoes back Kevin! ”
” Well I decided right there and then I didn’t want to be poor for the rest of my life and was the only one in my family to get a college education. ”
” What did you study Kevin? ” I asked.
” Economics… I studied business and economics. I soon figured out that I needed to work for myself to get rich. When you work for someone else you will never get rich.. Even if you get $100 an hour there are only so many hours you can work. ”
” Then I got thinking about what kind of work would deliver the best return..
” You see Tony if you manufacture cars it takes a huge amount of money for the first pro-type and even if the second one is cheaper it is still huge money. ”
” Then you need all the parts, you got to pay people to assemble the parts you buy, paint it, storage and distribution costs etc…
” So I figured software design. I studied accountancy software after finding my niche. ”
” So now my first prototype may cost a lot of money from Microsoft but how much do you reckon the second will cost when I copy it? ”
” I see what you mean Kevin, buttons! ”
” And I don’t have all the purchasing, storage and distribution costs of other industries. ”

I made two long stops that day while running along routes 136w and 150w. Tracy joined me on the road for an hour. She is very busy now with her pottery work. She is going on vacation in two days time and needs to prepare her hand craft for drying out in her two week absence. She returned with he friend Laura to pick me up just outside of Mayview just after dark. I had run almost 54km, 33.4 miles.
The next morning after breakfast in Tracy and Laura’s beautiful house  I was interviewed by a running friend of theirs.  Jodi a journalist for the News-Gazette. Jodi did what most journalist I am encountering fail to do… Get the facts right, nice job and I had it on my website before it hit the newspaper shelves.

On the way back to Mayview we stopped to pick up Brian another ultra runner I competed against in the Across The Years 72 hour race in Arizona. Always nice to run with old friends and runners. Brian pushed Nirvana for 16km/10 miles in the drizzle through Urbana and its sister town of Champaign, a university town. As we ran over some cobbled-stoned roads in the west of the town I asked Brian if he knew of any place to have coffee. Cell phone was whipped out to tell his running buddy Tony to turn on the coffee maker.
A mile later we arrived.
” What you up to today Tony? ” I asked.
” Nothing I am at a loose end watching daytime tv. ”
” You wanna run with us for a bit? ”
”  I can’t. ” Says Tony.
” Why is that? ”
” Already had my shower! ”
” I see. ”

Just outside Champaign I was ambushed by a photographer for the Gazette. A one snap photo shoot and I hardly had to break stride.. Nice one.
So I ran on on this wonderful day. Road day 100 of the world run. The rain had stopped. The snow has almost all melted in the fields. Some glorious running past the corn fields. Every so often there was a corn mill to mill, store and distribute the corn kernels down a conveyor belt into waiting trucks.

For the last hour of today’s 50km/31mile run into Farmer City I was joined by Amy and Sara. They had gotten off work early to run with me. Much appreciated, thank you very much.
Somehow I had gotten my brain in a twist. Amy has arranged for me to stay with her mam and dad tomorrow night and the next night. I thought Amy lives with them but she in fact lives in Champaign.
So Amy says.
” Where you staying tonight Tony? ”
” With you! ” I answered.
Confused I don’t think so look.
As we ran along at a nice 10km pace Amy is on her phone arranging a place for me with a workmate.
We arrive at said workmates house. He is putting down a new floor and looking for an excuse to finish early. We go into his house, I sit on his tool box and kick off my shoes.
Just then my mobile rings.
” Hey Tony where are you? This is Matt I am up and down the highway looking for you as your supposed to be staying in my place tonight! ”
So Matt is directed over to Amy’s friend’s house who is a bit concerned that my departure may mean he will have to go back to work now. I make an embarrassed exit!
It’s been getting a bit like that lately. I have been staying with so many people that my head is in a spin. Every morning before I go down the stairs I have to brace myself to ask myself who’s house I am staying in so as I don’t get confused when I say good morning.
I am usually the last one up at night as many of my hosts retire for the evening while I am busy checking emails. I have to make a mental note of where my room and the bathroom are as it wouldn’t do to go into the wrong room! On one occasion I came out of my room in the middle of the night to use the bathroom. All the doors were closed. Not wanting to take a chance… Which one is it, like Russian roulette well….. I just held my pee  till the morning. I have also become an expert at the various shower levers and buttons that change the water from the bath supply to the shower head. The pull down ring design which just under the main bath taps mouth has caught me out twice. On both occasions I have had to get dressed again to ask how to run the shower.
Eventually I got over to Matt’s house. He had prepared a nice steak dinner. Great! I am keeping my iron content levels up well these days.
Matt is preparing to set out on an over 4,200km/2,650 mile Pacific Crest Trail hike  PCT DETAILS from just north of the Mexican border with California right up into Canada. It will be a four or five month backpacking trip. About once a week or every 10 days he will come to a town off the trail to resupply his food, shower and launder his clothes. The PCT is similar to the Appalachian  trail I mentioned last month. The hikers all look after each other. Local people also come out to assist. Any kind gesture offered to the grateful hikers is referred to as ‘ Trail Magic. ‘

I ran into Heyworth and stopped in the Pit Row Bar for a huge lunch. The friendly bartender didn’t ask me any questions, he just left me to eat. I heard him talking about some footballer who had done some kind of a trick and they showed it on ESPN. He said they had a million and a half  You Tube hits that very morning. Then I get a text from NBC TV Illinois to ask where I am as they want to shot some coverage for the news. So I leave without saying anything about the world run. Just goes to show one never knows what’s happening in ones backyard.
Half an hour later a white hatchback car glides slowly by. The cameraman is in the trunk with the hatchback door open. He is zooming in on me. I pose as I sip from my water bottle. Amy’s dad Bob came out this morning and picked up Nirvana so I am running nice and relaxed and at a decent clip too. The road was quiet so the hatchback drove on the left side of the road as well as parked in the middle with hazard lights on. Anywhere he could get a good shot. He got some good ones too as there was little shoulder. As a truck came barrelling towards me I was running on the gravel and even on the uneven grass surface along the ditches. When the traffic passed I ran back onto the road. So then it was time for the interview. A good 15 minutes. I was very happy with it. So was he but not sure when it would air.

Bob said he would meet me at McDonald’s in McLean, a part of the route 66. When I got there he was talking to a friendly Irish-American cop called Tom. Tom gave me his business card. Bob joked saying that Tom pulled him up for loitering as he stared down the road waiting for me. Meanwhile Tom had asked Bob for my website and checked it out in his squad car. Tom shook my hand and welcomed me to town. I got my opportunity I had long waited for to have a debate about the mindless people that phone the cops thinking I am running with a baby down the highway!
” Surely Tom that’s what a jogging stroller is for and surely it is not illegal to take a child out running on the highway? (in a safe and visible manner)  Even in the winter the highway is equally for all pedestrians and the onus should be on motorists to drive in a safe manner? What do Scandinavians say? There is no such thing as cold weather only poor clothing! ”
” Absolutely Tony. ”

Bob drove me over to his house and on the way pointed out a bank of 32 windmills of which one was on his land. Later I heard these windmills  are a huge energy source and pay for themselves in a few years.
It cost  the state about a million dollars to build each one including all the ground work, connecting underground cables and serious foundation required.
I asked Bob’s wife Vera about them and did she think they are ugly.


” Well we had a meeting before construction and the general consensus was that we would become accustomed to them. After all aren’t pylons and telegraph poles ugly and haven’t we become accustomed to them? ”
Good point.
I parked Nirvana in the garage of Bob and Vera’s farmhouse. In the garage was Bobs collection of about six Corvettes.
” You know Tony I am a former insurance man and each of these Corvette’s has a death story! ”

Steak, sweet potatoes, crunchy veg and a delicious salad for dinner..
” I am so full I cant eat anymore! ” I said.
” So you got no room for ice cream Tony? ”
” I always make room for ice cream :)   ”
Then Bob has a brainwave.
” Hey Tony when you start from McLean in the morning you come right by the end of our road around lunchtime. ”
” Will you have more steak and ice cream? ”
” Sure! ”
” See you at one! ”


Then on Thursday morning after Bob and Vera have spent two days commuting me and treating me like a king in their house it’s time to say goodbye. A couple of days ago we were strangers. Now I have two more solid friends. I thinking of all of the wonderful people that have hosted me and gone so far out of their way to make me so comfortable and happy. My eyes water. I cry, I am sure they see me but they understand. I am crying my eyes out at this as I type this two days later. The world is full of wonderful people and just a few bad apples try to spoil life’s great party.

I continue running along route 136. I am listening to my Ipod for the first time in nearly two months. I had gotten out of the habit in the bad weather. Now on the road I have a one ear rule and just like I used to sneak it illegally under my hard hat when I worked in construction.
I was listening to the Sterophonics’s  Have A Nice Day  PRESS HERE TO PLAY when an lady pulled up in front of me and gave me a bag of red grapes.
” I saw you on the road and you look like you are doing something important so I went home to get you these. ”
She hurriedly jumped back into her car.
” Whats your name? ” I called out.
” Bridie. ”
I ran on into Havana. I was hungry. From the east side it looked like I had run through the town when I stopped just before the railroad tracks. On the map it is a decent size town. But now there was no cafe in sight. So I stopped at the County Market supermarket and asked.
” Well sir if you want a coffee you can just go on down to the bakery section and help yourself to our complimentary coffee. ”
I am pouring a cold coffee from the dregs of the burco when a friendly clerk called Chelsea offers to help.
” Sorry it’s cold and almost empty sir. ”
” What I heard all about your delicious coffee and ran all the way from Dublin for it and you tell me you are out of it! ”
So Chelsea goes inside and comes out with a larger cup and offers to reheat it.
Coffee spills on my sleeve from the burco which I have by now tilted almost horizontally.
I am eating one of Bob’s steak sandwiches as I wait for Chelsea.
” So tell me one thing she says.. ”
” How can you afford to run around the world? ”
” I bring my sandwiches into supermarkets and drink coffee dregs. And you can read about it on my blog”
” You know I must be the only person in the world with no computer. ”
” Good I was going to write about you and now I can really write what I like. Unless you borrow your brother  or sisters computer! ”
” I am an only child.. ”
” Good then I can really write what I like about you! ”

Running over the W. Lucas memorial two lane bridge was a bit scary as there was not footpath. It was about a kilometer long and I decided it was safest to run it with the traffic to my back. So what if they had to wait. This way they had more advanced warning. I got over in the end without too much bother.
An hour later I met my host for tonight on the road. Steve, his wife Carol and their 17 year old daughter Sierra.



Steve and Sierra ran with me for the last 45 minutes while Carol drove and became the official photographer for the day.

On the way back to their home in Petersburg we stopped at an historic Lincoln village which had been recreated to show what village life would have been like in Lincolns time. We stopped at the old shop that Lincoln used to own and live in. I am thinking..
” Nice cabin to camp in and I wonder what it would be like to sleep in Lincolns bed. ”

There was a few inches of overnight snow but nothing serious. Carol is rushing off to the airport as she has a race in Florida…It seems more  like a girls weekend to me. Steve has a 15km run in St. Louis. A sporting family they are both members of my friend Tracy’s  Second Wind Running Club.

Carol brought Nirvana over to R and M Cyclery in Springfield to have a brake assembly I asked Chariot Carriers to have sent to me. I figured it would be a good idea to have a brake going down the steep descents of the Rocky mountains. The wonderful people of R and M Cyclery fitted the brake for free. Thank you so much!

While Carol was talking to the owner about my world run another man called Mac was listening.

” So where is he going to next? Asked Mac.

” To Macomb. ” Said Carol.

” Well I know someone that can put him up! ”

I was all out of contacts till this encounter happened. Something always seems to work out. I am either very lucky or there is an angel looking after me.. Same with the weather over the winter!

Post to Twitter


Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011



For Original Article Click  HERE

Running the world Submitted by Jodi Heckel on Mon, 02/21/2011 – 3:55pm

It was a gray, drizzly Monday morning when Tony Mangan set out on day 100 of running. His trip today would take him from Urbana to Farmer City, just a sliver of his goal of running around the world. The 53-year-old Irishman started his journey at the Dublin Marathon on Oct. 25, and it brought him through Central Illinois this past weekend.

Mangan was in Danville Saturday, and he spent Sunday night in Champaign at the home of Tracy Thomas, a fellow ultrarunner. The hospitality he’s received on his trip has far exceeded his expectations. He’s been able to find a home to stay in for much of his trip. He knew Thomas through ultraraces, and she arranged for places for him to stay through Central Illinois. Other times, he’s stayed with strangers who’ve opened their homes to him. “I can’t remember the last night I’ve had to rough it,” Mangan said. He’s also had other runners join him for portions of his trip. Thomas ran with him on Sunday. After a huge breakfast at Thomas’ house Monday morning that consisted of a saucepan full of oatmeal, four eggs, two yogurts and coffee, Mangan ran through town with Brian Kuhn of Champaign, also an ultrarunner. Meeting people — runners and non-runners — has been the most enjoyable part of the trip for Mangan. He makes it a rule to stop twice a day at a gas station, restaurant or bar to have a cup of coffee or something to eat and talk to people. He nearly always gets free refills on his coffee, and sometimes gets a free meal. The idea of running around the globe had been growing in his mind for 20 years before he set out. “It entered my mind after one of the great runner’s highs, the endorphin highs,” Mangan said. But unlike others who might dream of such an endeavor, then forget it when reality set in, the idea brewed in Mangan’s subconscious for years. He loved travel and has done a lot of long-distance biking. He read travel books and was attracted to stories of long-distance walks and runs. He began running around the time he turned 30, doing 10K races and marathons. Then he moved to Colorado in 1994, and in the eight years he lived there, he became an ultrarunner, racing in mountainous trail runs. Mangan had a successful career as an ultrarunner, setting world records for 48-hour runs on an indoor track (about 265 miles) and treadmill (about 251 miles). Then he decided it was time to pursue his dream of running around the world, so he left his construction job in Ireland and set out. He pushes a modified jog stroller he’s nicknamed “Nirvana,” that holds camping gear, clothes, food, spare inner tubes and tools, and his netbook computer and a few other electronic gadgets. Cart and contents weigh about 70 pounds. After running the Dublin Marathon, Mangan ran across Ireland to the westernmost town of Dunquin. He flew to North America and started running at the easternmost point, Cape Spear in Newfoundland. He’ll continue west to Colorado. Crossing the state will be a “major, major highlight. I love it so much. It’s like a homecoming for me,” he said. Then Mangan will head south for Mexico, Central America, and South America, where he plans to run to the southernmost point, Tierra del Fuego. One of the places Mangan is most anticipating is Peru, where he’ll make time to see Machu Picchu. “I spent a year previously in South America and never went to Peru,” he said. “It’s a sin. One of my biggest travel regrets. This time I’m going to put it right.” Mangan will fly from South America to New Zealand and continue through Australia, Indonesia, southeast Asia, China, Kazakhstan, Russia and back to Europe. He plans to finish his run with the 2013 Dublin Marathon, assuming he has no major injuries or illness that slow down his progress. By the end, Mangan will have covered between 26,000 and 27,000 miles — the equivalent of 1,000 marathons. He’s been averaging almost 200 miles a week, and he’s about to discard his eighth pair of running shoes. He takes a rest day when the opportunity arises or he feels he needs one. He recently ran 25 consecutive days before taking a rest day this past Saturday. He expects logistics to be more difficult in areas of the world that are more sparsely populated, and where he doesn’t know anyone or speak the language. He’ll need to carry more of his own water in some places, and get visas for China, Kazakhstan and Russia. For right now, though, it’s about running the next 25 or 30 miles. “It’s a great lesson for living in the moment, taking one day at a time,” Mangan said. But he has imagined what it will be like running those last 26.2 miles, remembering all the places he’s been. “When I’m running the last marathon in Dublin, I want to go through (my memories) like snapshots, all the way around my route.” Tony Mangan is documenting his run around the world on his website, www.theworldjog.com, where he regularly posts updates on his blog. The website also charts Mangan’s progress. Through his run, Mangan is raising money for Aware, an Irish charity devoted to treatment of mental health issues and eliminating the stigma of depression. Readers can link to information about the charity through Mangan’s website

Post to Twitter


Sunday, February 20th, 2011

Feb 21st 2011. West of Mayview to Farmer City 50km = 31.1 miles.

Tonight I am the guest of Matt. Thanks so much :)

Feb 22nd 2011. Farmer City to McLean.  47.6km  = 29.6 miles.

Tonight Bob and Vera are forcing steak and ice cream into my big and willing mouth :)   Thanks so much!

Feb 23rd 2011.  McLean to 136/county road 3200 east junction   50km = 31.1 miles.

The food and company was so good I commuted back and forth for Bob and Vera’s steak and ice cream again! Also came back for a long lunch and more ice cream :)

Feb 24th 2011. US136/county road 3200 to 3km/2miles east of Ipava.  50km =  31.1 miles.

Tonight I am guest of Steve and Carol. Thanks so much :)

Feb 25th East of Ipava to Macomb  40.3km  =  25 miles.

Tonight I am the guest of Richie and Mo, Thank you very much  :)

Total for 104 Road days: 4,655.4  km = 2,892.8  miles = 110.4  marathons


Before leaving Carol’s Cabin Renne’s husband Alan showed me around their dairy farm across the road from the cabin. It’s a monster operation as they have a few hundred cows which have to be milked 3 times a day starting at 4.30am. Each cow has a daily yield of 10 gallons. A hard life I think but Alan tells me its the greatest job in the world! They are so busy they built a whole new barn in the summer themselves. They poured 5,000 yards of concrete in it’s construction.
They also seem to have a maternity ward for their cows as calves are always being born. A huge pit was also dug to store the 3 million gallons of water needed for the farm reservoir.

I ran on into Port Jefferson, a small homely village and stopped in the 47 bar for a break. As I drank my coffee I got talking to Mark a project manager for a large construction company working in Louisiana on the cities rebuild after the terrible Hurricane Catrina disaster of a few years ago.
Mark works down in Lousina  returning to visit his girlfriend whenever he can. This being Valentines weekend he has made a big effort. He says there is an unlimited amount of work down there in the 15 year rebuild project. If you cant find work there you don’t want to work. Part of the labor shortage is due to a population drain where terrified people quite literally abandoned good houses in a effort to start a new life elsewhere. Mark gave me $50 towards my journey expenses.
That day I made it to Newport and stayed on Alan’s brother, Ted’s farm.

Next morning Sunday was a nice day. I stopped  for breakfast at a nice diner in Versailles called The Sweet Shop. Many of the locals were there having breakfast or coffee after Sunday service. I seemed to have made quiet a stirring in this sleepy town as it took me an hour and a half to have breakfast and get back on the road. I had my breakfast paid for and many well wishes.
Half an hour up the road I was stopped by a newspaper reporter who had been tipped off by a local.
on and on I went down route 47. I was aiming for Union City on the Ohio/Indiana state line. I didn’t have a contact for tonight so hustle will be the order of the day and will have to be sharp.
A little later a car slows down.
” Hey what are you doing? ” Says the driver.
” Running around the world. ”
” No shit! ” Says he.
” Yes shit! ” I say and then add.
” Where are you from? ”
” Union City. My name is Dean. ”
” Well Dean do you know any backpacker types that would put me up for the night in exchange for some stories of the road? ”
Dean drives off and comes back a few minutes later.
” How many nights you planning to stay? ”
” Just the one. ”
” I just spoke to my wife and you are welcome to stay with us but we do have a very small house. ”
” Sounds good. If I can put my sleeping bag on a sofa I am in Heaven! Can you give me your cell phone number please?”
An hour later I am stopped by the road by a man called Ronnie. He asks me into his home for a coffee. I go in and talk to him and his wife Teresa for a few minutes. They tell me that if Deans offer falls through that I should phone them as they have a vacant rental property in Union City.

I arrive in the city to find my phone has no service there. Payphones are non-existant or out of order as people rarely use them these  days. I go to the police station and ask them to phone Dean.

” Can you come down to the station to pick up your friend? ”

I’m hoping Dean is not back home drinking beer!

It turns out Dean is a model citizen, a pastor.

Union City is a divided city. Divided by the state line. Dean lives on the Indiana side and I run as he drives slowly towards his house. We cross over into Indiana and I remember a childhood song that seemed to stick in my mind for years. No particular reason other than it’s a beautiful song by R Dean Taylor called Indiana Wants Me (Lord I can’t go back there)  PLAY

His wife Azariah is stunningly beautiful and hails from Thailand. They have 3 young boys from their eight year marriage. They met when Dean was an English teacher in Thailand. Previously Dean was with the USA military in Iraq. He saw so much death and destruction that he decided there must be more to life than war so quit the military and studied for his pastorship.

The whole family squeezed into one room during my 2 night stay to give me the boys room, an incredible kind gesture.

Next day was Valentines day and I was able to abandon my beloved Nirvana. To keep my hands to myself. To be able to run another day without pushing her was a joy! I ran 50km mostly into a strong headwind to Losantville and waited for Dean to commute me back.
So on towards Noblesville. The weather is starting to heat up. Today I had a tailwind. i ran strongly.

Craig a triathlete hosted me for 3 nights in Noblesville and did a lot of driving to commutte me back and forth.

It is amazing that almost everyone I meet seems to be on flexitime. This meant I could run two more days buggy free.

One of these days the Boone County sheriff called out to me and said he got a complaint that a runner was running on the shoulder of the road! Imagine someone complaining about someone running and not even on the road. After telling him what I was doing he told me to proceed with caution. So I gave even more room to the traffic by running on the grass verge beyond the hard shoulder till I got to the next county, Montgomery county.

We went out for a lovely steak dinner with Craigs two young sons, Jack who is 9 years old  and Joey who is 7. They are both very sporting and seem to spend their evenings either playing basketball or swimming.
Good luck to your preparations for the Louisville Triathlon Craig. I know it’s so important to you and thanks for being yet another great American hero.

On my last day in Indiana I put in a long day – over 61km/ 38 miles. On the way I was joined by Curt and Don who took turns pushing Nirvana. Later I was joined by Dave and Janet. This was my second longest day of the world run after my 68km/44 miles in Newfoundland. these runners helped keep me going through a fatigue barrier especially after yesterdays 53km/ 33 plus mile day it was a very tough day.

Janet and her husband Kevin will host me for a couple of nights in Danville, just over the state  line in Illinois. Last week I averaged around 50km / 31 miles per day so tomorrow I will take a rest day. But its not a total rest day as I am a guest at Kevin and Janet’s running clubs Fat Ass trail race. Runners can run from one to four 7.1 mile loops, a sort of non-competitive fun run and you choose your distance. I decided I will run and walk one lap as I obviously dont want to get injured on the very slippery muddy trails but want to join in in the spirit of the event.

Post to Twitter

ILLINOIS: Planned Route For Immediate Future. Looking For Runners And A Bed For The Night!

Sunday, February 20th, 2011

ILLINOIS…. This is the way forward Runners wanted and a place for my hat! Please spread the word amongst your friends, Family and running clubs. Please scroll down to USA on the ROUTE page.

Please click  HERE  for a route map and route.

  I would love to bring my tales of the road to your doorstep I can make reasonable commutes if you can return me to my finishing spot!Please  EMAIL ME theworldjog@gmail.com

(Danville, Champagne,  both arranged) Farmer City (arranged) Havana (arranged)  Ipaya, Table Grove, Macomb, Colchester, Carthage, Hamilton, Keokuk,

Post to Twitter


Thursday, February 17th, 2011

Feb 18th 2011. Crawfordville to Indiana/Illinois state line 61.3km  =  38.1 miles. :)

Staying  with Kevin and Janet tonight and tomorrow for a rest day in Danville, Illinois. Thanks so much :)

Feb 20th 2011 Illonoisstate line on US136 to Mayview, west of 53.8km = 34.4 miles

Tonight I am staying with Tracy and Laura.  Thanks for all your great help :)


I was running up a long gradual hill in Westfield Indiana today and feeling a bit tired. I stopped for a cappuccino and then continued on up route 32 west. I think I need some help.

I am at mile 18 and there are about 10 more to go. I am asked many times what I think about when running. Well it varies. But this is typical. I can get into a dream state. Perhaps that’s how I took that wrong turn last week? A wrong turn that turned out to be a good turn as I met some more amazing people that I will write about soon.

So today I was plodding up that long drag when I heard his voice in my head.
” Tony I believe you got some news for us today? ”
” Who are you? ”
” News Hound from Sky News! ”


I get to mile 19 and it levels out a bit.
” So what you want? ” I ask.
” Tony tell me about the man in the red coat. ”
” Santa you mean? You are a bit late. ”
” No the other one. ”
” Well you are a couple of days late for Valentines! ”
” No No! ” Barked hound.
” Well you must mean Liverpool my old soccer team but I don’t know what they are doing anymore. ”
They are from England but out of Europe now… Soccer is a mixed up sport now.. Figure that one out.
” Ah I get it now Hound Dog! I ran my 100th marathon of this World Run  a couple of hours ago… Is that the breaking news? ”
” No No Tony… It’s far more important than that because its very warm today and you nearly ditched that red coat! ”


Mile 20.
” Yes its getting very warm now and the big news is that it seems the worst of the winter is over and you know what Hound Dog… I nearly took that red coat off that has not come off my back since October 25th! ”
” Yes I can see  and smell that Tony the fields are starting to thaw and the water is all over the road. You are getting a lot of splashings as the trucks go by. ”
Mile 21.
” How far you going today? ”
” Well Hound you know the way those  super models say they don’t get out of bed for less than 100k? ”
” They want to run for Ireland in the Celtic Plate 100km international next month? ”
” No silly they want 100 grand! ”
Head scratch and mile 22.
” Well Hound I don’t  like to get out of bed for less than 42k.. Two for the price of one. ”
” Whats that in American? ”
” 26.2 miles or a marathon.. I don’t like to get out of bed for less than a marathon or I’m not a happy camper. ”
” But you haven’t camped since Newfoundland! ”
” No silly… That’s an Irish expression for not being too happy about something. But I may ease back next week or the week after..You know the recession! ”
Mile 25 and coming into Jolietville..
” So whats that news again Tony? ”
” They told me its 61 degrees Farenheit. Whatever that is but I know its getting hot! Summer is on the way.. I don’t want to tempt fate..”
” Anyway Hound… What you doing here? A bad news week.. Did they kick you out of Egypt or swim from Australia? ”
” Give me a break Tony.. I just want a scoop.. And what were you saying about the super models getting out of bed to run the Celtic Plate 100km? ”
” No another misquote Hound!  I said they don’t get out of bed for less than a 100 grand for a photo shoot. ”
 Mile 26.
” Hey Tony when those models take off their clothes don’t the truck drivers honk their horns? ”
” Yes always. ”
” Well Tony why were the truck drivers honking at you when you were taking off that red jacket? ”
” Look Hound… This is your exclusive when I take that red jacket off I will have my own photo shoot of the occasion..The first time since October :)   I think we beat the winter…And the truck drivers are honking to tell me to get off the road! ”

” But Tony surely if you take that red Event Montane coat off Great Outdoors will not be too happy with you? ”

” I am hoping that Great Outdoors, Irelands leading camping and outdoors store will give me a blue Event Montane coat as it is the best one on the market.”
”  No need to turn the subject blue….  Tony I see you just stopped… 28.4 miles today. Are you going back to bed? ”
” No Hound.. I just worked a bit of overtime. ”

Post to Twitter


Friday, February 11th, 2011




9th Feb 2011:  3km/2miles west of Ashley to W.Mansfield 52.6km = 32.7miles

Guest of Julie and Pete Thanks for your great help :)

10th Feb 2011  West Mansfield to DeGraff Jct at 508.  35.1km = 21.8 miles.

Thanks very much to Renne and Alan for putting me up in their luxurious hunters cabin resort called ” Carol’s Cabin ” Tonight and tomorrow, 11th for my rest day  :)

12th Feb 2011. De Graff Jct to Newport. 46.5km = 28.9 miles

Thanks so much to Ted and Jodie for putting me up tonight :)

13th Feb 2011.  Newport to Union City, Indiana. 49km = 30.4 miles

14th Feb 2011 Union City to Losantville Indiana,  36/35 jct  50km =31.1 miles.

Tonight and last night I am the guest of Dean and Azaliya. Thanks for your kind help :)

15th Feb 2011 Losantville to Pendleton 36/38 jct (Speedway gas station) 47.5km = 29.5 miles.

Feb 16th Pendleton finish to Westfield airport. 45.7km = 28.4 miles.

Feb 17th 2011 Westfield Airport to Crawfordsville. 53.4km = 33.2 miles.

Tonight, last night and Tuesday  I am the guest of Craig and sons Joey and Jack. Thanks very much lads  :)

Feb 18th 2011. Crawfordville to Indiana/Illinois state line 61.3km  =  38.1 miles.

Staying  with Kevin and Janet tonight and tomorrow for a rest day thanks so much :)

Total for 98 Road days: 4,363.7 km = 2,711.5  miles = 103.4  marathons


Nancy and I were dropped off by Jerry where I had finished up yesterday. It was a glorious day  for running with little traffic along 39 west and then onto 21.
The fields were full of beautiful horses, too beautiful to be the work horses they are. They stood in the snow covered fields looking miserable just waiting for the next days work.

Nancy and the work horses.

We stopped after a couple of hours for lunch in TJ’s restaurant for lunch. We both ordered meat pie. I like to treat any runner that runs with me to the snacks.
We made quiet an entrance to TJ’s. We had a good laugh with the locals and even the owner and cook came out for a photo and presented us with diaries and pens.
Then it was time to run on and on we  ran back onto route 36 which was now a busy 4 lane. Nancy retired at 27.7 miles putting her into first place on my ‘ accompanied league ‘ of the world run. Jerry picked her up and let me run on for another 40 minutes to get the extra 4 miles for my 50km. A good day at the office.
Next day was Sunday and I was joined by Stephanie for about 9miles/15km. We were running at a nice pace. So nice to be able to run without Nirvana for a change. Stephanie is an artist. She has an incredible passion for the canvas. She spent some time studying and painting in Paris. It’s a bit cold here now to be painting some landscapes. She is going back to Colorado where she once lived. We agreed to meet up to run again when I get there.
After an hour we arrived at an auto dealership. It was owned by her father Les.
I called out.. ” Les… You got the coffee on? ”
” You bet.. Come on in.. ”

'' You got the kettle on Les? '' Can you believe the word of a car dealer?

I love this running and stopping to talk to people.. I do it all the time. This is a run but its also a journey. I have drawn a mental picture of my route so far from Merrion Square, Dublin from the finish line of the Dublin marathon across Ireland to Newfoundland and across Atlantic Canada. Across the fields of Maine which many people have referred to as a mini Alaska. The wonderful people of New England and the excitement of the Pennsylvanians as their beloved Pittsburgh Steelers prepared for the Super Bowl. ‘ Troy Will Destroy ‘ signs hung on many supermarket walls. They had my support but alas despite a late charge Green Bay triumphed.

A little later Nancy drove out to join me for another hour before Jerry arrived with Nirvana in the back of his pickup.
More goodbyes… The never ending goodbyes.. It’s so hard. I find it very easy to make solid friendships but the reality of life on the road is that almost all of these goodbyes are permanent. A few I will probably see again but fewer I will forget…. I will never forget how these hundreds or is it thousands of ordinary people have taken me to their hearts. Just like a son, even though I am older than many of them their maternal instincts are making my world dream a reality.

Then a little while later I was met on the road by Mark, a friend of Nancy and Jerry. Mark and his wife Debbie were to put me up for 2 nights in their Mt. Vernon home. These two days I averaged a little over a marathon a day. The traffic was heavier with a very narrow hard shoulder on US 36w/229w. There was also a lot of slush I had to run in and out of as I ran along. Running on snow and slush can make your feet cold as opposed to running on the blacktop.
As usual a precious two day invite means I can run without Nirvana. I never cease to be amazed by the efforts people put in to help me. It seems everyone is on flexi-time in their jobs or they just loose time.

Great American people Mark and Debbie put up with me for two nights in Mt. Vernon.

Mark works in construction. There is not much going on at the moment during the winter. Also the recession has hit Ohio very badly. Along the highway there are houses that are literally abandoned. Many of them are literally falling down due to neglect. They were probably owned by an elderly person that has died. Perhaps their siblings live too far away to be able to care or sell the property or even want to pay the property taxes. Besides some properties in Ohio can be bought on Ebay for a couple of thousand dollars.. In many cases one can withdraw the purchase price from an ATM in a couple of days. Big industry has deserted the area. A steel mills in Youngstown has gone to China.
Over in Detroit where the motor industry has literally crashed the local authorities tried giving away (for free) vacant houses to other adjoining residents to encourage them to extend out. There was limited take up on this offer as many people were so cashed strapped. So in order to avoid ghettos the authorities just flattened vacant houses.

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago about the Amish community in upstate New York and how they reject modern conveniences and technology preferring to live a simpler more labor intensive life. Many Amish also live in Pennsylvania and in this part of Ohio.
Yesterday I saw an Amish horse and buggy struggle up a steep hill. About 3 times the horse stopped, took a breather and then gave it another go till he eventually got to the top. All this while a patient motorist waited behind till it was safe to overtake. This made me happy as I continued my own struggle up the hill with Nirvana!


Well I witnessed for myself this morning how one Amish man skirted around the rules. No telephone means not in the house but a payphone was set up in a home-made telephone kiosk shed. By luck yesterday I had finished  for the day at an Amish hand-crafted furniture factory. AS is my normal practice I  photographed my finish location which happened to be the sign for their factory.

Even luckier just as I was getting ready to leave an Amish man called Moss came along to make a phone call from the kiosk!
” Hi My name is Tony, I am from Ireland and running around the world! What’s your name? ”
” Moss. ”
” I got a buggy too! ” I said feeling a bit dumb.
And then dumber.
” I lead a simple life too but only sometimes! I sleep in barns, camp and run around on foot! ”
And even dumber!
” I know you don’t use computers so I wont bother you with my website. ”
” Where do you get your news from Moss? ”
” The newspaper. ”
” Do you use any form of old radio? ”
” No. ”
” I would love to spend a night with an Amish family.. Would they welcome me? ”
” Yes but you would find it different! ”
” Are you going in there to make a phone call? ” I cheekily asked.
” Yes. ”
” So its not allowed in the house but in a phone kiosk in the garden? ”
” We don’t like phones in the house as it is too much of a disruption. This phone is for the community. ”


” But Moss I see you got an led flashlight on top of your cap! Is that not modern technology? ”
” Yes I like this. There is no light in there. ”
” I don’t want to offend but can I take your photo Moss? ”
” Well we don’t do photos. ”
And then Moss asked me about the run and we parted.

Hey Moss I got a buggy and like the simple life too.

Later that evening Mark told me about some of the gun laws in the state. About how many people have permits to carry around concealed pistols. It’s called ‘ Carry and Conceal. A permit holder once he has passed a competency test can carry a handgun.
” It all adds up to a safer society. ” Says Mark.
And then adds. ” If a criminal knows I have a gun he is not going to break into my house. It has been proven that in mandatory gun ownership communities that the crime rates drop..”
” And they are even considering allowing concealed weapons into bars providing the owner is not drinking because the type of person that goes in to such places with a shoot up in mind knows that nobody else will have a gun… Same on a school campus.”
Then he showed me his Ruger38 handgun and Smith and Wesson 380  and a selection of antique muskets, Chinese military and modern hunting rifles. Quiet a collection.

Tuesday I left Centerburg looking for route 521 which was about a mile outside of town. I had decided to take this little used route to Delaware as 36 was very busy with little or no shoulder. It was a very cold morning. Somehow I missed the sign or more likely there was none. Before I realised it I was almost in Sparta 6 miles/10km out of my way. I was not going to turn back as I could still head west from Sparta on route 229. I ran on through a couple of small villages and at the end of the day stopped for plate of beef hot pot in Ashley. It was to be a bitter cold night. Many people have told me over the last few weeks that this winter has been the harshest in living memory.
I need to find some place to stay. My contacts have all run out in this area.
I knocked on a couple of farmhouse doors just outside Ashley. I introduced myself in the usual manner and asked if I could sleep in their barn or garage. I got a whole load of refusals from a series of nervous people even though they could see I was running.
When I went up to one house two dogs came out! These dogs are rarely tied as rural houses have an invisible electric fence which give the dog a zap. The dog soon learns his boundaries and does not venture further. Often as I go by they chase me to the boundary and mercifully stop! Here I was behind the boundary. Luckily the owner came out and called the dogs to heel. Sorry cant let you stay here… No room, not my house, the dogs would bark at you all night were the reasons.
Jason in the 4th house said yes. So I settled down on some insulation material, my air matress and sleeping bag for an early night.
A few hours later Jason told me his wife Leighhel had told me to come in.
Next morning over breakfast Leighhel joked that she had given out to Jason.
” What do you mean you are letting a stranger sleep in our barn? Are you crazy? ”
Later after she had checked my website from a piece of paper I had handed Jason.
” What are you doing letting him sleep in the barn. Bring him into the house. Are you crazy! ”
So I was brought inside to a nice toasty bedroom with a heater running all night.


Off I went in the morning into the cold wind. It has been the coldest few days of the world run so far. The wind cut through my face. Moisture on my eyelashes froze.  With my balaclava it is often difficult to breathe.  It’s too difficult wiping my face without moving the balaclava. My face is sore from the rubbing of my leather gloves.
It’s very tough but I am not complaining as I am living my dream. I am having a blast. I am tougher than I have ever been in my life. I got to be, I need to survive.

I ran about 20km/12 miles to a village called Prospect. I went into Subway for lunch. Three people, two men and a woman are at a table. the woman is particularly interested as her name is Julie and she is a runner. One of the men, Pete is her husband. After the usual questions Julie is excited. I would love to run a bit with you she tells me. so I tell her to go home and get changed. But I got one rule…
My runners push Nirvana!
Julie returns and I am still eating lunch. She asks Pete to pick her up on the road after about an hour and a half. then I ask Pete to put Nirvana in the back of his pickup to save his wife the bother of pushing the buggy! I love small town America.. A short while ago these people were strangers and now I am handing over my most prized possession without a moments hesitation.
Out on the road Julie has told me I can come back to their place tonight and they will return me in the morning. I can even run on a bit longer on my own and Pete will come out again for me. So I do and get over 52km/ 32 miles for the day.
Back in the house Julie tells me she did a lot of volunteer work in the Peace Corp. can you believe she brought a dog back from Mali?
From Timbuktu, Mali to be exact and there is no quarantine required for entry to the United States. Just a certificate of health and fitness from the local vet in Timbuktu!
Now it was my turn and I said with a big grin my most hated head-wrecker question!
” Hey Julie.. How did you get it across the ocean!? ”
” On a plane of course! ”
” What on the seat next to you? ”
” No in the cargo hold. ”


Next morning Julie leaves me back to the Logan county line just outside of West Mansfield. It’s even colder today but it’s supposed to take up tomorrow for a few days. I was very tired today. Not just because of yesterdays effort but because the logistics, the constant stream of emails and the effort I am putting into this blog is eating into my rest time. I am not getting enough sleep and the cold is energy sapping. I run on. Its about 24km/15 miles to the next town called Bellefontaine. I approach town  with my stomach falling out with the hunger even though I had a huge breakfast. It’s a big town with little traffic on the 4 lane highway on the way in. I follow US 47 west which bypasses the downtown. Before I know where I am I am on the way out of town without even seeing a single restaurant or gas station. I stubbornly refuse to backtrack even though there is probably nothing for 3 or 4 hours run.
So I push on for another half hour and sit on a fence in the cold. As water bottles freeze so quickly I rely on my thermos for my drinking water. That’s a joke I drink more coffee than water and got a whole highway of yellow snow to prove it.
As I was sitting on the fence a cop car stops in the middle of the highway and I tell him I am running around the world and about not getting anything to eat in town. I tell him I am having a picnic. My canned tuna and fruit are also frozen. Everything is frozen and my hands are starting to freeze.
The cop tells me my best bet is to go back to town and I say there is no hope of that! Then he says go about 7 miles up the road, hang a left on 508 for De Graff and go 3 miles out of my way.. No hope either.
He drives off, I pack up and run the 7 miles. I came to the junction and see a restaurant at the junction. It looks closed and there is a sign counting down the days till spring. If it was open the cop would have known. I see three cars and as I have nothing to lose go over. Much to my surprise Val’s Diner is open. I’m delighted and order a plate of fried liver, onions, cottage cheese and a baked potato.
I have run a little over 35km and just under 22 miles.
Because there is such a huge interest in my trip I turn it to my advantage and finish for the day.
When the inevitable question comes around about where I am going to stay tonight I say that I was hoping someone would know someone with a barn I could sleep in.
The customers are very friendly. I am talking to the waitress Amy when the owner Brandon comes out to me while talking on his phone.
Brandon hangs up and says.
” I got a place for you! It’s a local woman called Renne. She got some luxury cabins she rents out to hunters and there are no hunters in town now! ”
I am delighted. Soon Renne comes over to the restaurant. I leave Nirvana in a backroom and just take my night baggage.

Brandon tells me my dinner and breakfast in the morning have been taken care of!


Renne can’t do enough for me. She drives me over to the 5 star hunters cabin called Carol’s Cabin: named for Aunt Carol Morgan, a little country farm girl that grew up to embody grace, beauty, patience and a love for creation.

It’s not really a cabin. It’s a huge house. It even

has a pool table and all the food I can eat :)
Her son Xavier arrives to stoke up the wood burningstove. No messing around with matches or firelighters. Xavier lights it up with a blowtorch!
” I learnt that in the boy scouts! ”
As I settled down for the night I could hear the coyotes howl in the distance.


Post to Twitter

Song Written For The World Run By John-Michael Field: The Irishman Upon Your Floor (The Ballad of Tony Mangan)

Wednesday, February 9th, 2011

Well what can I say? Thanks to my friend John-Michael Field from Wilbraham, Ma. I stayed in his home for a couple of nights last month.

He penned this song for me!

Press >> HERE To hear The Irishman Upon Your Floor (The Ballad of Tony Mangan)

Tony’s takin’ his time, runnin’ around the world…three years! Please check him out at: theworldjog.com-blog if you have not done so already… I told Tony I’d write him a song-an anthem, it turns out-it’s the least I can do. Tony, we’re hoping that everyone the world ’round hear about you comin’ and gets in touch through theworldjog and puts you up for the night with a fat steak! Carry on!
The Irishman Upon Your Floor

Across the miles and years he’s run
Setting records in setting suns
10 marathons in forty-eight (hours!)
450 K in three days straight
The ultramarathoner’s curse
If you don’t run then you feel worse
If Tony could, he would retire
But the travelin’ bug set him on fire

From Dublin off to Newfoundland
His magic letter in his hand
He is the Buddha in disguise
Circlin’ the world, no compromise
The Irishman upon your floor

Sun’s not quite up, the mornin’s stark
This ain’t a stroll out through the park
The trip goes on, and on and on
At fifty K a day…
His focus is beyond belief
Each measured mile some small relief
Each step is gold through wind and cold
He’s steady on his way

Tony, where’r’ you travelin’ now?
We know you’ll labor on somehow
We’ve sent the word ahead of you
To tell them that you’re passin’ through
Tony, where you travelin’ now?

Nirvana’s path is straight and true
Faithful friend she’s been to you
Across the miles past curious smiles
You both go floating by
The WorldJog’s a dynasty
Gathering friends from A-to-Z
Your family grows out on the road
We’re with you every mile

Tony where the hell you been?
We’re dyin’ to hear from you again
The weather’s chasing at your heels
Where will you find your next hot meal?
Tony, where the hell you been?

Final Chorus:
Tony where the hell you been?
We’re dyin’ to hear from you again
We’ve sent the word on up ahead
That you’re much obliged for any bed
The Irishman upon your floor

Post to Twitter


Tuesday, February 8th, 2011



Running across the state line into Ohio I was struck by the large amount of potholes and neglect by the authorities to clear the edge of the road and the sidewalks from snow. I was running into East Liverpool on routes 68 and 39. There was a lot of obvious neglect. I even noticed two drive thru beer barns!


I kept running. It was windy, very windy.

Gradually the roads improved. I ran over some bridges on the 4 lane highway out of town. The guard rails were not very high. It was a bit scary as I looked down and saw that long drop down into the frozen Ohio River that borders Ohio from Pennsylvania and West Virginia. Yesterday I read about a tractor trailer that was blown over in a storm in nearby Lisbon.

James Bennett, an English potter, established the pottery industry in East Liverpool, and it became the community’s leading employer. East Liverpool became known as “The Crockery City.” East Liverpool once produced more than half of the United State’s annual ceramics output.


Then after the hustle and bustle of East Liverpool and its 13,000 residents things settled down. I enjoyed some lovely soft and gentle rolling hills.
I am going to miss these hills in a week or two I will be out in the prairies. The prairies where one can see a tree ten miles away. Flat as a pancake. Windy as Hell with no hills for protection.

I got a text from Nancy. I will be staying with her and her husband tomorrow. She had heard about me from her ultra running friend Kim on Facebook and had contacted me. Nancy is going the extra mile. She had been ringing around her friends trying to fix me up with a place to stay in Carrollston tonight. Eventually she rang the Methodist church. They were going to put me up in a local hotel till Charlotte and her husband George both lay pastors for the church said they would have me.

Charlotte loves to do voluntary work for the community. It doesn’t matter what it is she will volunteer. George’s passion is quail breeding. He is also a substitute teacher for the local high school. They also run a very suscessful and well supported youth club for teens which keeps them busy with sporting and artistic activities and hopefully out of harms way.
He got a call to go into class tomorrow. A 7am start.
” Problem is Tony you will have to get up at 5am so as I can drop you back at last nights finishing position! ”
After spluttering my coffee I said.. ” Sure. No problem! ”
I now realize I am not a morning person any more since this world run has started. Perhaps when the hot weather comes along I will improve. For now I find it really hard to get going in the mornings. This puts serious pressure on me with the short days.
Then George got a wonderful idea.. A brain stormer!
” Charlotte why don’t you take the pickup tomorrow and drop Tony off and that way he can lie in? ”
George I love you! Happy days!
So I left at my leisure the next morning. A local reporter wanted to interview me before I started but decided it would have to wait till lunchtime. We made the arrangement for 12.30 to 13.00 at a BP gas station. The roads were very quiet but it was very windy and I didn’t get there till 13.30. We had a good chat and it went on for over an hour. Now you know why I try my best to avoid them but the people I am going to assume I would like it and arrange them! They rarely make a difference publicity-wise as many of these papers are weekly editions and I am long gone when they hit the shelves.
Today I ran 45.6km/28.3 miles.
Nancy rings to find out where I am. I think I am running towards Uhrichville and have found a way to take a back road to avoid this minor town. It turns out I am heading towards a larger town called New Philadelphia. The sign posting is so bad I didn’t even know I took the wrong turn!
” Where are you? ”
” Just past the Red Onion Bar on route 39. ”
” Well you should have left 39 for Barnhill at Roswell. ” says Nancy.
She is a 50km runner and wants to come out with me tomorrow. She tells me she has a friend who is a journalist. I go deaf. Then another one from Delaware texts and wants to know when I will be there. It’s about 4 or 5 days away and I ignore it.
Nancy’s husband Jerry is driving. We are driving to their farm of 210 acres. I call it a ranch but he laughs and says no it’s a farm. I feel stupid when I still don’t understand the difference. I think JR Ewing would be proud to live here. He has 3 miles of trails around the property for Nancy to run on. A nice place for a race.
Jerry is also a taxidermist. He has a workshop attached to their log constructed mansion.
He stuffs deer, elk, coyote and bears.
Earlier I told him about my head-wrecking ‘ joke ‘ I get subjected to at least 6 times a day, every day.
The big smiling, bet nobody ever asked you this one before…. ” So how you get across the ocean? ”
” I got one too… Says Jerry.
” The husband always says will you stuff the wife and hang her up on a plaque? ”
” But then who will do your washing and cleaning and cook for you? ” Said Nancy.

I am sure he could have plenty of nixers!

Post to Twitter

Charitable Man fails as BK’s Bar in Snyderburg saves the day.

Thursday, February 3rd, 2011

Running out of Smethport towards Kane there were some snow flurries but nothing sticking. In fact it was a beautiful day, the nicest in a long time. I was told that a local runner called Gregg had driven to St Julien’s about 13 miles up the road and over a mountain. His aim was to run back and meet me. I asked him why he just didn’t run out from Smethport and return to town after running with me.

” Well Tony then you would have to push Nirvana over the mountain at Mt. Jewett. ”

 Thanks Greg who even got a day off work to run with me.


So then I arrived in Kane. My host for the night Lisa drove out to greet me on the outskirts. I was in a great mood singing my head off to Glen Millers Pennsylvania 6500!


” I will be there in half an hour Lisa, Stick the kettle on for a cup of tea! ” I shouted across the road.

I arrived 15 minutes later. Lisa and her husband Tom had an Irish flag in the window to greet me.


 They had been tipped off that I was in the area by their ultra running son Yassin Diboun who lives in Portland, Oregon. Their great friends Dave and Melody came over for a while. Dave was a runner himself with a marathon best of around 2’22. He told me that Irish marathoner Mark Carroll’s wife Amy is from Kane.

Lisa has done some wonderful voluntary work as an English teacher in such places as Afghanistan and India.

As Dave and Melody live close to tomorrows finish in Marrionville they took me under their wings that night. It was another great day on the road as Lisa and Tom said they would come over for dinner so they transported Nirvana. After a couple of hours I stopped in a roadside convenience store.  Just as I was going in 3  hunters were going out.

” You out running in this weather? ” said one.

” Yeah,I’m actually running around the world! ”

The store owner was also standing at the door.

” My name is Ted I’m a reporter with our local paper. I was looking for you but you never called me from Lisa’s house last night to do the interview!”

” Ah! But I just stopped for coffee and see you got none! ”

” Do they sell coffee anywhere else in town? ” I teased.

So he heated up some water in the microwave in a  cup. A box of tea bags were taken off a shelf and an impromptu interview was done.

Later I wondered what the convenience storekeeper/ Kane Republican reporter would have done had a meteorite fallen a couple of miles away..Gone get someone to mind his store!

It continued to snow and it was hard going running in the hard shoulder with the slush. They were not ploughed today. My  feet were cold running on it. Traffic was heavy.

One man pulled up in a pickup.

” You ok? ”

” Sure am.. I am running around the world! ”

Eyes to Heaven he steps on the gas and says..

” Well have a good run! ”

So I made it to Dave and Melody’s incredible house. Dave built it himself overlooking a lake on a hillside. It was a house that a millionaire would be proud to own. It took him 15 years to build.


Melody had a passion for stained glass and used to make it as a hobby 20 years ago. Dave sometimes helped her and eventually by accident they turned it into a nice business in which they had so much work they started turning down work offers.

I was asked at dinner if anything funny happened to me on the road today. It seems there is hardly a day when something hilarious doesn’t happen.

Well there I was looking for my way out of Kane to Marrionville. I took a wrong turn.

Stopped to ask a truck driver for directions.

” Which way is it to ROUTE 66….I was about to ask and then loosing my bottle and not wanting to be thought of as an eejit instead asked…

” Is it Route 62 or 66 to Marionville? ”

” Marrionville is straight ahead about 25 miles on route 66. ” says the truck driver.

So there I was photographing the famous iconic ROUTE 66 sign and even stopped to ask a puzzled local to take my photo.

So Dave says.. ” My God you are right! ” I have been living in this area for 30 years and never realised it! ”

We talked about it for about 10 minutes and then someone said.. ” But doesn’t Route 66 start in Chicago? ” I feel dumb again. What we got here is Pennsylvania State route 66!


Next day, Saturday and its really cold. Still snowing and the road is busy again as I push on and on through the slush in the hard shoulder.

I stop after about 2 hours for some warmth in a bar. Its about noon and a man looking the worst for wear is sitting on a bar stool at the counter next to me. He keep repeating himself. laughing and repeating the same old silly question. ” So how did you get across the ocean? ”

Everyone asks this as thought they had thought of it first.

He asks me my route and says he knows someone in Rimmersburg.

” You know Rimmersburg? ”

” never heard of it! ”

” But you must know Rimmersburg… Everyone knows Rimmersburg! ‘

Bartender says. ” He is from Ireland, he never heard of Rimmersburg! ”

Drunk pulls out his phone and says… Hold on let me phone my friend… You will be alright tomorrow night for a place.. He is a Charitable Man! ”

Drunk spends 10 minutes trying to convince Charitable Man I am legit and he had it on good authority I was seen running in the snow today.

” Of course he didn’t swim across the ocean! ” He says as he puts down the phone. And then adds..

” He don’t trust you! ”

I run on for another couple of hours.. Its warmer now. Then I see a few snow mobiles outside BK’s Bar in Snyderburg. I go in and order a burger and chips for lunch. there are about 8 locals drinking bottles of beer. They pay for my lunch. one of them Greg donates $5 to Aware. 


They are a good bunch of lads and we have a laugh. they are checking out my website on their mobiles as I eat lunch. One of them a man called John said I could stay with him and his wife that night.

” How long will it take you to run 6 miles Tony? ”

” In these conditions between an hour 15 and 30 minutes. ”

” Ok you get running and I will follow you in an hour but make sure you turn left at Brenner Road. ”

True to his word John meets me down the road. I go into his house and his labrador licks me to death. Everyone seems to have a labrador. I been told it’s Americas favourite dog.

John takes me out to a steak house for dinner. I insist on paying but he is very forceful and won’t have it.

We pick his wife Debbie up from her job in JC Penny’s. I understand she is a Jehova Witness. Later I find a ‘ good living ‘ book that was put into my computer bag. I am not inpressed.

Sunday morning we are sitting at the table drinking coffee.  John has been wracking his brains and phoning his contacts for a place for me to stay near East Brady. He cant think of anything.

Then he calls a friend called Burr an antique car restorer. So John tells Burr  he needs help but its best if we meet for breakfast in a diner in nearby Clarion.


Burr knows the very man. He knows everyone

” A couple of hippies.. The last of the hippies and I am sorry but they are smokers!

” They live in a place called Wildcat. Don’t ask me why it’s called that its just a house between Rimmersburg and East Brady.

” Its easy to find. After you go through Clarion just run another 20 miles on route 68 and about half a mile after the scenic overlook turn left… Easy! ”

On the way I stopped in a town called Sligo. A touch of Ireland in Pennsylvania the town named after it’s Irish namesake.


Moses the attendant in the local store told me I could stay with local people had I wished. he was a friendly man and was quiet excited at the thoughts of me running into his store during the world run. I got treated to as much homemade soup as I wanted but only had time for on delicious cup.

Earlier John said he would drop Nirvana off. Just as I draw level at the sign that says Scenic Overlook 1/2 mile, right on the line John pulls up in his pickup. What’s the chances of that. I think he should buy a lottery ticket on the way home. So I unload my faithful buggy and roll her down the hill to Bookie and Kathy’s house. They greet me with..

” I hope you like meat pie as we got it for dinner? ”

 ” Sure do!

” When they told me you are a couple of hippies I said,

” Darn hippies I got to eat nuts and leaves for dinner! ”

We have a laugh and they take good care of me.

Next day their son Patrick is going to Chicora to see a friend in an auto dealership, as its about 20km/12 miles along my route and over a couple of steep hills I am delighted. I made good progress and stopped in a BP station for coffee and pastry. The staff greeted me enthusiastically and the manager gave me them for free!

I had gotten off to a very late start so pushed my way into Butler just before dark. I have now run out of contacts and tried my luck at the Catholic church. I just wanted a roof over my head in some hall but was refused. However Tom in the Methodist Church saved the day. He is a very good natured man. I stayed that night in an office building of sorts and was told to help myself to whatever food I wanted from the food bank which they had ready for distribution.

Pastor Tom stopped by later telling me he has a day job and does his pastoral duties in the evening and weekends. We chatted about my trip and his time in Ireland 7 years ago.

He got a Donegal tweed hat he is so proud of. He pulled it off for my inspection. Good quality Donegal tweed, made in Howth, co. Dublin. He warned me that there is a storm coming through that very night.

I awoke to find no more snow on the ground but much ice. It turns out it was an ice storm.

I got another late start as I waited for the cold rain drizzle to blow over.It was around 11am. I was just wheeling  Nirvana to my starting point, last nights finishing point when a black man said ” Good Morning. How Are you?”

I just said I was fine and walked on. He called me back and said..

” I don’t mean to offend but you look like you could do with a couple of bucks? ”

I was so taken by surprise when he pushed $4 into my hand. That donation will go to the charity.

I think as the old timer said last week that only someone who is down on his luck would be pushing a cart around in this weather!

I am clean shaved and showered every day but today it was to happen on two more occasions. I stopped in Evans City for a coffee and pasteries and sat on some sacks in a convenience store. Just as I was about to go the manageress gave me a quaterpounder burger and said.

” Sir this is compliments of the store. ”

” Thanks very much but do you think everyone thinks I am a tramp? ” I asked.

” Yes! ” She replied. I reckon my theory is correct.

I ran on through even more slush and heavy traffic arriving at the junction town of Deer Lake Extension just before dark. I phoned my contact Tim who is Barbie’s son from Caudersport from last week. While waiting for Tim to arrive I had even more coffee in a gas station. The lady there was not very friendly. When Tim cam in he confirmed the bad vibe.

Her head was spinning off its sockets when I was answering Tims questions about it being cold with my usual reply.

” Well it’s a great day when you are living your dream of over 20 years!

” I can’t believe I am here doing this trip, what I’ve always wanted to do! ”

On the way to his house he was telling me about his job as a consultant for the Ohio nuclear power plant.

Post to Twitter

since Tony began his World Run on 25th October 2010

Please sponsor a world walk hotel night or a meal etc!You do not need a Paypal account, just a bank card! Press Paypal link below. Thank You :)

Donate to Aware

Text WORLDJOG to 50300 to donate €4.

100% of text cost goes to Aware across most network providers. Some providers apply VAT which means a minimum of €3.26 will go to Aware. Service Provider: LIKECHARITY. Helpline: 01 4433890.


About Tony

I have always considered myself to be an average runner. In school, I was even bullied for I was a sports wimp. Through hard work, dedication, perseverance, self-belief and a strong mind I succeeded in not only running around the world but breaking four ultra running world records during my competitive career. Having previously cycled around the world I didn't start running until I was almost 30. Then I had a dream of running around the world. For many reasons, I waited for over 20 years. One reason was to establish my pedigree as an endurance athlete. I started and finished my world run as the current World Record-Holder for 48 Hours Indoor Track 426 kilometres (265 miles), a record I have held since 2007. I also broke and still hold the World Record for 48 hours on a Treadmill 405 kilometres (251 miles) in 2008. When I retired from competition, more pleasing than any of my world, European or Irish records I had the respect of my fellow athletes from all over the world - in my opinion, sports greatest reward - an achievement I am most proud of. Then I finally put myself out to pasture, to live my ultimate dream to run around the world! This blog was written on the road while I struggled to find places to sleep and to recover from running an average of 43.3 kilometres or 27 miles per day for 1,165 road days. There were many nights I typed this blog on a smart phone, so fatigued my eyes closed. Many journalists and endurance athletes have referred to my world run as the most difficult endurance challenge ever attempted. During my expedition I rarely had any support vehicles, running mostly with a backpack. In the more desolate areas I pushed my gear, food and water in a cart which I called Nirvana, then I sent her on ahead to run with my backpack once again over altitudes of almost 5,000 metres in the Andes. I stayed in remote villages where many people had never seen a white person before. I literally met the most wonderful people of this world in their own backyard and share many of those amazing experiences in this blog. My run around the world took 4 years. There were no short cuts, I ran every single metre on the road while seeking out the most comprehensive route across 41 countries, 5 continents, I used 50 pair of running shoes and my final footstep of the run was exactly 50,000 kilometres, (almost 31,000 miles) I eventually finished this tongue in cheek named world jog where I started, at the finish line of my city marathon. I started my global run with the Dublin Marathon on October 25th 2010 and finished with the Dublin Marathon on October 27th 2014 at 3 05pm! Thank you for your support, I hope you can share my unique way of seeing the world, the ultimate endurance challenge! Read more...


North Pole Marathon Logo
UVU clothing
On Running
Chariot Carriers Logo
Dion Networks Logo
Dry Max Sports
John Buckley


flickr slideshow

view full size

Aware is The World Jog Charity.