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Marathoner Recreates Forrest Gump's Cross-Country Run, And He's About To Beat Forrest's Record

WRIC / Paramount Pictures

Growing up, Forrest Gump was one of my most favorite movies.

Part of the film's charm was that Forrest was a... unique character.

Seeing the way he reacted to everything around him made the movie so fun.

Despite all of the places he went and things he saw, most people would not want to be Forrest, or step in his shoes.

But Rob Pope is the exception that proves the rule.

He Just Started Running

Rob Pope, dressed as Forrest Gump.run.robla.run / Instagram

One day in 2016, for no particular reason, this marathon runner from Liverpool, England just started running across America.

Well, that's not exactly true.

Pope had read an article examining if Forrest Gump's famous cross-country run was possible, and how long it would take.

He finally set out to prove it could be done two years ago, and has been running pretty much non-stop ever since.

"I think of myself as a scientist doing an experiment," Pope told Inside Edition.

Stupid Is As Stupid Does

Las Vegas Review-Journal / Paramount Pictures

Pope has kept in character for most of his run, dressing up like Forrest and sporting his signature  bushy beard from the running scene.

He also avoided doing any special training before the run - although he was a internationally competitive marathon runner anyways.

Pope has matched the locations Forrest visited too: taking off from Mobile, Alabama, running to the Santa Monica Pier, and heading back for the East Coast.

But unlike Forrest, Pope has a special reason for his cross-country journey.

And the professional runner put Gump's record to shame.

Run, Rob, run!

Pope has covered about 40 miles on foot every day since he started running in 2016.

Taking only a few short breaks to see his family since then, he's covered 15,000 miles to date, in five cross-country trips.

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That's like running from the North Pole straight to the South Pole.

But Pope says Forrest Gump didn't just inspire his long run, he also looks up to the film character.

“He’s just the way we should all be," Pope said.

"He never judges people, he gets on with what he needs to get on to, he doesn't let anyone stand in the way, and he's very nice."

Pope is pretty nice too, in fact he's raised over $28,000 for the World Wildlife Fund and Peace Direct while racing across the country.

"I'm pretty tired, think I'll go home now"

After two years on the run, Pope is finally ready to end his "experiment."

As he prepares for the final leg of his race, the runner says he'll have covered 15,600 miles by the time he's done.

That's almost 400 miles more than Forrest ran.

While Pope doesn't have a crowd following him around the country like Tom Hanks did, he's hoping the famous actor will join him at the end of his journey.

"I'd love him to finish the final mile with me" he told The Daily Mail, "wouldn't that be something?"

You can support Pope and his charities by visiting his website.

[H/T: Inside Edition]

I write about all sorts of things for Shared, especially weird facts, celebrity news, and viral stories. CONTACT: zachary@shared.com