Member Spotlight: John Rhodes

John Rhodes enjoys a walk at Reynolda Gardens with his dog Patrick.

Name: John Rhodes

To sum myself up in a nutshell: I’m basically an introvert until I get to know someone and then I won’t shut up. I love to use humor to lighten situations.

I’m originally from: The Winston-Salem area. I grew up in Walkertown and went to East Forsyth High School.

I’ve been in Winston-Salem: All my life except for a few years when I lived in    Greensboro and Charlotte. I live out in the county where the scenery is beautiful.

A proud member of Twin City Track Club since: March/April of 2019. I was also a member in the late 1980s/early 1990s.

Been a “runner”: Since 1987 when a friend of mine got me started. He was a top-notch runner and had a shoe contract with New Balance and he gave me his used shoes to get me motivated. My running has been off and on since 1987, but I have been a dedicated runner since 2015.

The longest distance I’ve ever run is: 8 or 9 miles. I mainly run 5K races, but I hope to run the Mistletoe half marathon this December. Check back with me in December and hopefully I can say the longest distance I have run is 13.1 miles.

Memorable running experiences: Rave run – I ran through Gettysburg National Military Park a couple of years ago. I ran at 7:30 in the morning and the scenery was beautiful. Another Rave run for me is the Twin City Track Club Christmas Eve run. The scenery is nice, and the atmosphere is so awesome with runners wearing their elf ears or Santa hats.

Race: The first 10K race I ran. That was the “First Federal YMCA Road Race” in the spring of 1988. That was my PR for a 10K. I ran it in 41:33. I can only dream of running at that pace now.

Gone postal run and/or I’d rather forget: This wasn’t an official race, but I was running a casual run with another running group in town, and I tripped on the sidewalk and fell and hit my head. I scraped my knee and was bleeding from above my eyebrows. I walked back to my car. I learned a valuable lesson from that run; don’t run on sidewalks because the city doesn’t maintain them as well as the streets.

My motivation to run is: To stay fit and to stay healthy. I also like to run to clear my head and view the scenery. Within the past 10 years I weighed over 220 pounds and was a type 2 diabetic. Because of my running I am no longer a diabetic.

But when I’m not running, I enjoy: Playing with my new dog. His name is Patrick. I adopted him from the Forsyth Humane Society. I really enjoy watching nostalgic TV, including shows like “The Beverly Hillbillies.” I try to enjoy playing golf.

One thing running has taught me is: Discipline and goal setting. Sometimes I don’t want to run but I force myself to run because it is part of my life now and it is good mentally for me. I always feel better after a good run. I am constantly trying to reach new goals in my running. Some days are better than others, but for me any day I run is a good day.

I wish I could: Run a marathon. I plan to run a half marathon this December (Mistletoe). Hopefully, that will propel me to train for a marathon.

Most people don’t know I: Love military history. My favorite area of study is World War 1 and the Civil War. I also enjoy trivia. Some people may even call it useless trivia.

These are a few of my favorite running things:

  • Vice: I sometimes tend to start out way too fast and then I pay for it at the end of the race when I do not have anything left to finish strong.
  • Device: My Garmin Forerunner 235.
  • Advice: Don’t focus too much on disappointing runs (races or training runs). Learn from them but don’t beat yourself up over it. Tomorrow is another day.
  • Running footwear: My Hoka running shoes.
  • Pre-run/post run fuel:  I run with the Saturday morning 5-mile running group and I usually have 1 cup of coffee and one packet of energy gel pre run. My post run fuel is going to Dough-Joe’s for a doughnut and a cup of coffee.