Barefoot runner to cross two continents for a cause

WASHINGTON (WUSA9) --At first glance, Joseph Michael Kai-tsu Liu might seem like a typical runner - until you look at his feet.

"I've been running barefoot for about two years."

But now, he's taking it to new heights - running to the end of the world barefoot.

"I started July 2nd from Montreal, Canada and I'm going to finish in the southern tip of Argentina in Tierra del Fugeo," he said.

The reason: education.

The 32-year-old will be running through 14 countries, while raising money for foundations in each via donations on his website. It took Liu 13 years to finish his bachelors degree in engineering and he says he wants to make it easier for others to get an education.

"I want to help develop education a little faster so people can learn and have a better quality of life."

Almost two months after departing his hometown of Montreal, Liu has made it to D.C. but not without some obstacles.

"I had a huge blister my first week," he said. "The blister popped so I had to wear my crocks to run for 20 or 30 miles, so I lost my toenail but it doesn't hurt, it doesn't do anything really."

Liu will be running nearly 12,000 miles alone - no crew, no companion. He can only be tracked by a GPS he carries with him - a device that can also summon a helicopter in case of an emergency.

Liu also aims to be the first runner to cross two continents while running barefoot. He estimates it will take him two years to accomplish.

"That's part of what I'm trying to try something impossible and see what's going to happen."

Along his journey, Liu will eat and stay in hotels when given money by sponsors. Otherwise, he sleeps in a tent he carries with him and hopes good Samaritans lend a helping hand.

To follow Liu on his journey visit his website:

Editor's note - Watch this story in Spanish:


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