Man running El Tour de Tucson route to stomp out hunger

Updated: Nov. 15, 2017 at 9:59 PM MST
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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Dan Heston is no stranger to running.

"It's slowly progressed to me running half marathons, marathons and now ultras," he said.

In 2013, he started to run to stomp out hunger in Southern Arizona. Since then, he's run hundreds of miles and has raised more than $16,000 for the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona.

"It's an epidemic," Heston said. "Right here in Marana, right here in Tucson, there is a need. For every dollar donated the food bank can provide four meals to people."

On Friday, Nov. 17, Heston will set out on his longest run yet.

"Why not double the distance and see what we can do with it?" he said.

He plans on finishing the 106-mile El Tour de Tucson in 27 hours.

"I have confidence that I'm going to finish but mile 70, mile 80, mile 90, I don't know what that's going to be like," Heston said.

His longest run has been 60 miles.

Heston will start his run at 3 a.m. Friday and is planning on crossing the finish line between 6 and 6:30 a.m. Saturday, just before the cyclists start their race.

When the queasiness and muscle cramps start to set in, Heston said he'll remember why he's taken on this challenge.

He hopes his run inspires other to do their part in the community.

"I just think of myself as someone who is willing to endure something that maybe a little bit tougher than what most people would think about doing," he said. "So I inspire other people to just do one thing that can make an impact on the community on a positive side."

His goal is to raise $15,000 for the food bank. As of Wednesday night, he's raised about $13,000.

If you'd like to donate, go HERE. Donations will be accepted even after Heston finishes the race.

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