The United States isn't often thought of as a land of hungry people; but according to Feeding America, a staggering 1 in 6 Americans struggle with hunger every day.
Wanting to raise awareness about this pressing issue, a teenager from Wisconsin chose to embark this week on a physical feat so demanding, most would quail at the thought of it: He decided to run 101 miles -- the equivalent of almost four full marathons -- and every step he took on the long journey would be dedicated to ending hunger.
"I know hunger is prominent in our community, and it's pretty essential for every day life. Without food you can't survive," Kyle Lang, a senior from West Salem High School, told NBC local affiliate WEAU of the inspiration behind his run.
Lang, 17, who runs on his school's cross-country and track teams, said he hopes to raise at least $100 for every mile, per Great River News. Every cent he collects will go to two local organizations -- the Hunger Task Force advocacy group and the WAFER food pantry.
On Monday, Lang embarked on his long journey from Marshland to Reedsburg in Wisconsin. Along the way, the young man battled terrible heat, fatigue and painful, sore feet.
Despite the many obstacles he faced, Lang -- who chose to do the run as his senior exit project -- was determined to complete what he'd begun, eventually finishing the 101 miles over the course of two consecutive, arduous days.
"Mile 101. Not many words can describe my emotional mindset right now," Lang wrote on his Facebook page after the end of his trek. "What an accomplishment, but we must force ourselves to remember the true cause of the event. Remember those who are in situations worse than ours. Hopefully we can go out of our way to do good for others."
He added that the experience was a "humbling" one, but warned others to "NEVER run 101 miles in 2 days" if "you want to keep your sanity."
We salute you, Kyle. Really. We salute you.
Though his physical challenge is complete, Lang is still collecting donations via PayPal.