KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Seven marathons in seven days.
Hugo Garcia is running from Nashville to North Carolina, averaging 26 miles every day. He puts one foot in front of the other. That's been his way of thinking for the past week.
"You have to rely on some kind of faith, some kind of hope that things are going to be okay," Garcia said.
He is 22 years old and works as a videographer making videos for Youtube. He said he was a runner while he was in middle and high school; however, he has not trained to run long distances for several years.
As of Tuesday, he already conquered 182 miles, making it from Nashville to Oak Ridge.
"In total, it's going to be 642 miles," Garcia said.
Garcia is trying to prove a point. He wants this run to be a demonstration of the power of human mental strength, showing that people can get through anything life throws at them.
"You don't have to be strong. You don't have to be tough. You just have to keep running," Garcia said.
Although he has already run the length of seven marathons, Garcia doesn't see himself as a marathon runner. He likes to think of the journey as "one step at a time."
"All I have to do is worry about the next step that I take. And that's where I believe a lot of this resilience is coming from," Garcia said.
There have been a lot of moments on the run so far that have called for some pretty significant resilience.
First, running 26 miles every day is taxing on the body.
Second, Garcia set a goal for himself to not step foot inside of a car. He runs to every restaurant, shelter, and even restroom along the way.
Finally, Garcia and his girlfriend, Morgan Gill, are challenged with finding a place to sleep every night.
"We're not even sleeping sometimes because 30 miles a day is a lot to do," Gill said.
Gill drives in a car alongside Garcia on the road. She keeps him safe, holds supplies, takes photos and finds where the couple will rest at night.
They said they have spent the night at community members' homes, in churches and even in a barn. On nights where they couldn't find shelter, they set up a tent.
"It has really been superhuman strength and community kindness that has gotten up through the trip," Gill said.
Through it all, Garcia jogs on.
"This trip has been beautiful because I don't have to worry about speed, I don't have to worry about being like the strongest. So, I can just focus on running," Garcia said.
"It's just a super-human thing to see over and over again," Gill said.
Garcia then said he couldn't do it without her by his side.
"Behind every good man is a better woman," Garcia said.
The couple still has 17 days left to go until they reach their destination in North Carolina.
"If there's one thing that I can do is, I believe that I can keep going," Garcia said.
By the end of the journey Garcia will have charted more than 1.2 million steps.