Tip To Tip - The Great Florida Traverse

Mon June 1 - Thu December 31

Q:  This looks a lot like a bunch of other virtual events - why should I fork over my hard-earned cash for this one?
A:  In many ways, this run IS like a lot of other virtual events - in the exact same way that the second-ever 5K looked a lot like the first-ever 5K, and the same way the third marathon ever held looked a lot like the first two that were held.  Only YOU can decide whether or not to part with a bit of your hard-earned money, but I can tell you that this run should be a lot of fun for you!  It should be a win-win-win - you should be motivated to get some miles in, or push yourself a bit further, your entry will put some much-needed cash in the hands of two fine local charities, and you'll help keep a few local businesses alive.

This event is designed for you to join me, race organizer/timer Mike Melton, in virtually completing what has been a bucket-list item for me for several years - a self-supported journey run the entire length of Florida, from Pensacola to Key West.  My dream was to grab a hydration pack, some cash, a credit card, and hit the open road - I figured I would need 30 days at 30 miles each day to cover the 901 miles from the Tip of the Panhandle to the Tip of the Keys.  Until now, I've never been able to carve 30 days out of my schedule - and now that I have the time, the cash part of that dream is a bit too short ;-).  While you and I travel the length of Florida, I'll pop in at various points along the way with commentary on the place/city/town you're passing by, telling you some stories of the adventures I've had there, as well as offering you some internet links to find out more if you're interested in that particular locale.  Come join me!

Q:  Since I'm already signed up for three or four other virtual events, can I count miles from those events here?
A:  Absolutely!  As long as those miles are done from June 1 until December 31 (or until August 31 in the shorter event), count them!  If they're not done during that time frame, please don't count them.  Having said that, one of the overriding principals of this event is 'You Do You'.  If you feel like you can't or don't want to double-count (or triple-count) miles, then don't.  But don't look down on anyone who does - they're just 'Them Doing Them' lol!

Q:  I'm not sure I want to run - can I wait and enter at the last minute?
A:  Yes, you can do that - but the run will be closed once entries reach a total of 2,000 entrants, or at midnight on June 20, whichever comes first.  So if you snooze, you may lose!  Best to enter now and know you're making the journey!  Click the Sign Up button above now!

Q:  Do I have to provide evidence of my miles?  What evidence is acceptable?
A:  You're on the honor system here, because this isn't a competitive race with actual awards - it's a journey to help motivate you to push your own envelope.  If you have 'real run data', such as a GPS watch, Strava, or other documentation, that's great - we'll accept it if we ask you about your mileage and how you got it.  But we'll also accept a note from your favorite teacher, a phone call from your Mom, or even a pinkie promise that you ran what you say you ran ;-).  After all, you're just cheating yourself if you cheat!  And why cheat when it doesn't mean anything?

Q:  901 miles is a LOT of miles!  Do you think I can run that far?  Heck, even 128 miles is a long ways!  I don't even like to DRIVE that far!
A:  901 miles IS a lot of miles - but you have a LOT of time to get it done!  If you start on time, you'll need to run less than 30 miles a week to get there, and less than 10 miles a week for the shorter event option.  You DO have enough time to get it done!  So why not do it?

Q:  How do I see my progress?  How will I know when I'm done?
A:  Each time you report your miles, your total mileage will be updated, and the Results page (it's one of the links above) will display your run totals, your progress, and believe me, when you're done you'll know it ;-)!  There will also be a Map that will display your location on the course, and that location will be updated each time you post new miles.  So enjoy the journey and enjoy seeing your progress!

Q:  Is this a race?  Will there be a prize for the winner?
A:  No, this is NOT a race - the Tip To Tip (T3) is a Run, a Journey, or just Motivation to do a little more mileage.  NO, there will NOT be a prize for the first person to reach Mallory Square.  These are not race miles, they're run/walk/step miles.  They're a way to help you push yourself to better health and fitness.

Q:  What counts as mileage?  Can I walk?  Can I use a treadmill?  An Elliptical Trainer or other training device?  Can I count the steps I take during the day?
A:  Here's my declaration for what counts as 'valid miles done' - you should be doing miles for the purpose of health and recreation, not for some other purpose.  So if you're a delivery driver and you walk lots of steps each day, those steps taken would not be considered 'valid miles', since you logged those due to your work commitment.  Here are a couple of examples to help:  If you go out for a run or a walk with the express purpose of logging training miles, then count those as valid miles.  If you normally walk your dog each morning around the block, don't count those miles.  If, after having dinner, you think 'Let's go get some more miles in', and you take your dog for a 1-mile walk because you want company while you're out there, then count that mile as a valid mile, because your dog wasn't the prime purpose for getting that mile in, the Tip To Tip was the prime purpose.

In the end, You Do You - if you think it's valid mileage, add it in.  But if you think you need to ask me about whether or not it's valid mileage, it's probably not - lol.  If you're wondering if it might count - it probably doesn't.  Please don't look for the loopholes in the rules ;-).

Q:  Do I have to run/walk miles every day?
A:  No, you don't.  You're free to log miles however is best for you - do a little every day, or pile them all on over the weekend.  It's up to you to figure out what works and what doesn't.

Q:  I see there are charities involved - how much money do the charities get, and where does it come from?
A:  Yes, T3 benefits two local charities that suffered when local races they would have benefitted from were cancelled or postponed.  For every single entry that comes in before June 1, each of the two charities will receive $4 per entry (so a total of $8 of your entry will go directly to charity, with no fees or expenses subtracted).  Entries coming in after the June 1 price increase will have a total of $10 contributed directly to the charities ($5 to each).  You are gently encouraged to add an additional charitable amount if you choose - and if you do so, huge thank yous!

Q:  Where does the rest of the money go?
A:  The rest of the money will pay for the swag - the shirt and medal you'll receive, and shipping and handling.  Your race entry will provide much-needed cash infusions to local businesses which have suffered during the pandemic - the local shirt printer, the local medal supplier, the race timer/organizer - and each of them appreciates very much your contribution to helping them survive, so they can be there for future events!

Q:  How do I log my miles?  Is this going to be a pain for me to report in?
A:  This should be a piece of cake!  On the morning of June 1, you'll get an email from RunSignUp with a link to the reporting page, and instructions on how to post your miles.  Each time you want to update your mileage, simply log into your RunSignUp account, choose this event, and add in your miles, to the tenth of the mile.  If it takes you more than 60 seconds to report in, you're dawdling ;-).

Q:  Do I have to log in and enter my miles each day?
A:  Nope!  You can log in and add in your miles whenever it's most convenient for you.  It's more fun to post your miles frequently so you can better see your progress, but if it's easier for you to post once or twice a week, that's fine.  You do you!

Q:  Do I have to finish to get the medal?  When do I get my shirt?
A:  You'll get your shirt mailed to you once registration closes on June 20, so that means you'll get exactly the shirt size and cut you ordered (we're offering both men's and women's cut shirts, so make sure you choose the correct size/cut).  Shirts should be shipped the first week of July - once they're off the press, they'll be in your mailbox!  This means you should give us an address that accepts US Postal mail, or in rare cases UPS shipping.
Once you've finished your distance of 901 miles (or 128 miles for the shorter run option), We'll ship your medal to you.  After all, it wouldn't be a finisher's medal if you didn't finish ;-)!
Your finisher's medal will be made in the USA - it will not come from China!  We think we have a shirt supplier where all the shirts are made in the USA as well.  We're doing everything we can to keep your entire entry fee here within the US borders, helping US companies stay alive.  Thank you again for helping out!

Q:  What does the shirt look like?  Will the medal be cool or will it be a cheap piece of junk?
A:  We're working on the shirt design now, and will publish it on this site once it's finalized.  The same goes with the finisher's medal - it will be something to be proud of!  If you've done races with Mike Melton before (he's the Race Director of the Marathon of the Treasure Coast, among some other titles) then you know you'll get something like the TC Marathon medals and shirts.  If you don't know Mike, then you'll have to trust that he'll make it worth wearing ;-).

Q:  Can I run as part of a team?
A:  There are no Teams as such, because this isn't a competition.  But you're encouraged to form or join a Group, and make the journey more fun by banding together!  Just choose the Group option when you're registering!  Feel free to be creative with your Group name, but management reserves the right to edit names that cross the lines of decency ;-).

Q:  I registered before June 1 - can I count those miles towards my finish? What about if I signed up after the June 1 start?
A:  No, you cannot count miles done before the June 1 run start.  You can count miles done as of 12:01 AM June 1, and up until 11:59 PM December 31.  Yes, you CAN count miles before the date you signed up - if you sign up after the June 1 start date, then just log your miles for each day from June 1 on.  So sign up and run!

Q:  Can I sign up for the Just The Tip event, and then switch along the way to the All The Way event?
A:  I'm not sure why you would want to do that - why not just sign up for the 901 miles and see how it goes?  Let's say you signed up for the shorter option, 128 miles, and you knocked that out in 40 days, less than half the allowed total time.  You're a rock star!  Whoo hooo!  So now you think, 'I should have just run the big run instead' and you switch into the 901-mile option.  The problem with that is you're more than 40 miles behind the cutoff pace (you've covered 128 miles in 40 days, while you would have covered 168.8 miles in the 'big' run, which is 40.8 miles less) and now you've got to average 4.5 miles for the rest of the trip, instead of the 4.22 miles per day had you just started the big option on day one.  If it's the $5 difference in entry fee that's got you concerned, then contact me and I'll figure something out ;-).

Q:  I have a question that's not answered here.  What do I do now?
A:  Just email me, Mike Melton (the run organizer), at mcmelton57@gmail.com , and I'll do my best to answer your question in a timely manner, and I'll also probably post that question and answer here on the FAQS page (not naming you, of course).  So ask away!

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