Weekend Warrior: Phil Vaughn, 63

BIRTHPLACE: Paragould, Arkansas

JOB: Director of Life Center Ministries at Lindenwood Christian Church

SPORT: Running and biking

FAMILY: 3 grown children, 7 grandchildren, and 6 chickens

FIT CLUB: Memphis Runners Club, Memphis Hightailers, Half Fanatics, and Marathon Maniacs

I JUST RAN: The Navy Ten Nautical Miler

MOST MEMORABLE WW EVENTS: St. Jude Marathon, MS 150 bike ride, and being the Race Director of the Lindenwood Community 5K.

I RUNNING: The feeling of going long distances under my own power and being outside in nature.

INSPIRATION: Races, friends, medals, and that awesome feeling of being fit.

PRE-RACE RITUALS: Pre-pack everything the night before and get to the event an hour early and sleep in my car till start time.

IN TRAINING FOR: MS 150 bike ride

WW MUST-HAVE’S: Hoka Cliftons and Garmin 310 XT, but my new favorite gadget is the Terrano X bike intercom system.

OBSTACLE COURSE: Two years ago I broke my arm on the bike a week before the MS 150 that we had been training for all summer.

“My inspiration for running…races, friends, medals, and that awesome feeling of being fit.”

POWER PLAYLIST: Listen mostly to Christian music for inspiration.

BUCKET LIST: The Marine Corps Marathon and Disney Marathon

BEST EATS: Tellini’s for spaghetti before every race.

WHAT FAMOUS PERSON, LIVING OR DECEASED, WOULD YOU LIKE AS A DINNER COMPANION: Steve “Pre” Prefontaine

PET PEEVE: People on the Memphis Greenline who wander all over the path.

INDULGENCE: IHop waffles and chocolate milk after a race.

MOTTO: I love long runs because they test me in ways that I cannot normally be tested. Each run is a test of my will and my character. Can I stay the course? Can I overcome the pain? Can I overcome the doubt? Will I finish the race? These questions are the same questions that I ask about in my life. With each race, I discover new things about myself.

Interview by Hailey Thomas. Photo by Sarah McAlexander.

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