At 1,149 feet above sea level, after 14 days of cycling, Brian Landau broke through the 1,000 mile marker while approaching Eads, Colorado. He had over 3,000 more miles left to cycle across the United States before reaching his finish line in Natchez, Mississippi. The journey was physically and mentally challenging, but Brian is no stranger to such challenges.
A few years ago, Brian recognized the vital importance of his health and decided to make a change in his life. He began cycling and gradually transformed into the healthy and happy individual he is today. Then, Brian chose to take it to the next level and what he did next was nothing short of amazing.
After losing a family member to cancer, Brian decided to travel on his two-wheeled friend eastward from Arizona to Virginia, and then down to the end of the Natchez Trace in Mississippi, to raise money for cancer research. After extensive research he decided the Cancer Research Institute was the best charitable organization to receive these funds in the fight against cancer. As an incentive he rewarded donors over a certain amount with special care packages including small items, stickers, and Brian’s personal favorite, socks.
He began his journey on September 12, 2017, in Flagstaff, Arizona. Along his journey with the help of his brother Stephen, Brian documented his travels and experiences through his GoFundMe page. On his first day alone he clocked in what seemed to be an impressive 61.6 miles through the state of Arizona; later in his journey he would beat that record by double. He reached his first state line, entering New Mexico, just five days into his trip. In order to rest, he set up camps in different areas along his route.
As interest grew, Brian quickly surpassed his fundraising goal of $1,000. He began to share more about his journey along the way to keep his donors up to date on his progress, including details on the seventy-five pounds of his bike and supplies, including a full sleep system (tent, sleeping bag, sleeping pad), rain gear, medicine, and clothing. The continuous updates and small particulars about his travel made everyone feel included on this ride with him. Each day Stephen reported on Brian’s progress, noting how many miles he traveled, the elevation, state lines crossed, and the few rest days he took.
On Day 13, he crossed into Colorado. Two days later, he crossed into Kansas. Brian continued steadily from state to state: Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, and Virginia, which marked his milestone arrival on the East Coast. He had ridden over 1,800 miles upon reaching that state line on Day 34. Virginia proved difficult as he encountered six flat tires in the span of 36 hours while shifting to his southward route. Thanks to some good Samaritans, Brian was able to fix his bike and enjoy a warm meal at a Methodist Church.
By Day 50, Brian had already raised over $3,000 with almost a dollar per mile for the 3,486 miles he had ridden until that point. He continued cycling through North Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, and finally the last state line, Mississippi. On November 20, 2017, after 58 days of riding, 12 states, 4,094 miles, and 206,253 feet climbed, he reached Natchez, Mississippi. His physical journey may have ended there, but his fundraising journey didn’t. Brian was able to raise an impressive $5,434.59 for the Cancer Research Institute.
On May 7, 2019 he visited the Cancer Research Institute’s National Headquarters in New York City as his final trip of this journey to deliver his donation. We are so grateful to have him as a guest and to hear his story. It is inspiring to know the lengths in which our fundraisers will go to join us on this road to cure cancer. Thank you, Brian, for sharing your journey with the world!
Learn more about Brian’s journey on Instagram
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