Livermore’s Mike Beckwith comes to the end of a years-long mission to run every street in the entire city.
Beckwith, 50, moved to Livermore from Dublin in 2016 and first started his journey through Livermore later the same year, but said he slowed down when the COVID-19 pandemic hit and shelter-in-place orders have been implemented.
In addition to the pandemic delay, Beckwith – a recently retired tech professional – said he had worked a lot over the years and traveled quite often for work, which didn’t leave him much free time to do his errands. He said running the streets of Livermore was more of a hobby project than he did in his spare time.
“I also do a huge amount of weekend racing for trail races so I’ll be doing 26-30 races a year and that takes away from my weekend racing time because it puts me in those mountains running instead to run in the streets,” Beckwith said, adding that he usually does his local street errands on weekdays after work.
Now that he’s retired, he says he runs just about every day, which helps him get to the finish line much faster. Last Saturday, Beckwith had covered 343.79 miles, according to a tally he shared on social media.
He told the weekly he undertook the same business while living in Dublin and finished just before moving to his current Tri-Valley community.
“It’s really about running three, four or five miles a day and it’s starting to add up,” Beckwith said of his race strategy.
Beckwith wasn’t always passionate about running.
He said he was once a ‘day pack smoker’ and decided to quit around 10 years ago – just before he turned 40. He then wanted to find something to replace the smoking habit and he had a few friends running around. .
“I bought some shoes and went for a mile run and of course it was very painful, but it definitely made me want to quit,” he said.
After that first mile, Beckwith said he has continued running ever since and has also become an avid cyclist. Since 2011, he said he has run about 31 ultra-marathons and more than 125 half-marathons. “It became a big, huge part of me,” he said.
As a member of the Bay Area running community, Beckwith said he often had friends who would join him on his runs and when he ran through all of Dublin, the community is involved. On the day of his very last race in Dublin, he said around 40 people showed up to do it with him.
Beckwith tracks his progress using digital maps and shares it on his “Mike Runs Livermore” account on Facebook.
He usually posts two maps, one that shows a close-up of the specific area or neighborhood that he ruled and another that shows the whole city with all of the filled locations that he has completed. He said he uses a popular GPS app for cycling and running called Strava to help extract his tracking data. “Part of the fun is solving this puzzle,” Beckwith said.
He’s so dedicated to the effort that if he misses a street, he’ll come back another day to complete it. While he admits he gets tired sometimes, he says he never regrets going for a run.
“Even on the days when I don’t want to do it, I’m like, ‘What if I put my shoes on and go out?’ And at that point, if I decide I don’t want to do that, I’ll go back but it’ll never happen because I’ve already done the hardest part,” he said.
Beckwith also has the motivation of her family to complete her runs. He has three adult children and twin 4-year-old grandchildren. On Sunday, he completed his first run with his grandchildren and eldest daughter by competing in the Dublin Shamrock 5K.