Man walking across America stops in the Upstate - FOX Carolina 21

Man walking across America stops in the Upstate

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GREENVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -

The saying goes, "Walk a mile in his shoes." Well, how about 4,000 miles?

That's how far one man has traveled to get to the Upstate, and he's got another few hundred more miles to go.

George Throop began his trek walking across America in Washington state. He said he'll hopefully end sometime this winter in Washington D.C.

He said it started as a nine month, 20-mile-a-day walk across the country. It has turned into a three-year experience, with his main mission to promote healthy living as he honors his mother.

Throop said he's gone through two sets of tires, seven pairs of shoes, four sandals and has had countless blisters.

"Oregon was my blister state, blisters was one of many things that almost broke me. At the time, I was wanting to get 20 miles a day. I was overwhelming myself so much that I wasn't able to walk from one side of the house to the other," said Throop.

That was near the beginning of Throop's trek. He said to get through 11 states has been 99 percent mental.

"It's true I need arms and legs to walk. Other than that though, I have to remain focused and committed, and devoted to my goal," Throop said.

He said he wasn't planning on such an adventure, but since his mom died of cancer when he was 9, she was only 33, he knew when he was 33 he needed to do something.

Throop said he grew up learning that most cancers are preventable and he wants to promote healthy lifestyles to prevent the causes of cancers and other chronic diseases.

He used to work in high-rise security management, but has stepped out of his comfort zone and into new towns and cultures for the last three years. Throop relies on the kindness of strangers. They've invited him out for meals and into their homes to stay.

Daniel McCord, of Greenville, said it's not often people get to host someone who's walking across the country, and he wanted to be a part of Throop's journey. He's also making a short documentary about Throop's trip in this region.

People like McCord have arranged get-togethers and created an avenue for Throop to meet people and get to know a local community. Throop speaks to kids in schools. He stopped at Powdersville Middle School in October to encourage an active lifestyle.

"You don't necessarily have to jump off the sofa and go run a marathon or compete in an Ironman, no. It's go, get up, get out and take a simple walk," Throop said.

He hopes to inspire the passers-by. To folks who stop to ask him why he walks, he tells them he's walking to show that in any capacity, enough steps lead to a goal.

Throop leaves Greenville Saturday with a local group supporting him. McCord will record the walk. Throop will likely be in other cities in the Upstate for the next few days, before he continues on to the nation's capital.

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