Phil Schaefer

Age: 51

Running Highlights:
My first marathon (St. Louis ’90) with a 2:58 (my friends said my goal of under 3 hours was too lofty).

Winning my age group (over 50) in the Heart of America Marathon (’03) in 3:29. (It was pouring rain and I didn’t want to run it. I even told everyone at the starting line they were nuts!)

Setting my first cross-country course record in high school. (A tip for you high school runners: it helps to have your girlfriend there to impress.)

When Did You Start Running? Cross-country in my freshman year of high school, 1967 (if Forrest Gump had run through my city I probably would have followed him).

What is your favorite training route? A 12-miler that includes Twin Lakes, the MKT, a run through downtown and MU and ends going up the “killer” hill on Chapel Hill Road. It lets me experience the heart of our great community – the sights and sounds of geese, cardinals, snakes, deer and turkey; the smell of Lakota coffee roasting downtown; and the vibrant rhythms of the MU campus.

Personal Info and Interests: As a pastor I often use running as a sermon illustration of how we can face the challenge of life, develop character, and learn about faith. St. Paul – though probably not a runner – said it like this, “. . . those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize. Run in such a way that you may obtain it.”

Any advice for other runners? You may not be the fastest, nor train as hard as you wish but if you keep showing up, sometimes you win something. “Keep showing up.”