Allow me to introduce you all to Phillip Michael Tucker. Phillip is one of our newest captains. He is also Captain of our newest chapter in Knoxville, Tennessee.
How new is this chapter? Established back in August 2021. Phillip and the Knoxville brothers hit the ground running and they have not stopped. His face may look familiar to you as he has appeared on an episodes of TV One’s Fatal Attraction/For My Man. As a therapist [LPC-MHSP], Phillip was one of several professionals offering his input on a specific case.
Phillip, how did you get started running and how long have you been running? .
I never thought I would be an avid runner. After my 4th child, my wife had expressed some interest in running. I really got behind my wife and supporting her; that’s what got me started. Once I got in to it, it really took off. As a therapist, I’m always interested in things that keep me focused and balanced and running really helped with that’s. That was late 2018 so I haven’t been doing this very long
How did you hear about Black Men Run and what attracted you to the organization?
I was checking out various active groups and I didn’t see a lot of Black runners where I live. I randomly searched for running groups of color; I ran across BRC [Black Runners Connection] and then I started seeing posts about Black Men Run and I was pumped to see other Black runners period. And I was intrigued and excited to see that there is a group dedicated to Black runners.
As a new captain over a new chapter, what has been your biggest challenge?
Finding our footing during this pandemic, 2021 has been a whirlwind. Knoxville has a record number of shootings, the community has been under tremendous pressure. Trying to keep up with everything and getting Knoxville started has been a challenge. Our group has been consistent. We have a small strong group of guys who keep it going. Their consistency has really given us stability being a new chapter.
Do you have any specific goals for your chapter at this time? And where are you guys running?
I just want to focus on the overall quality of life for my guys. I want this to be a chapter where the guys feel comfortable coming out to our group runs regardless whether we are walking or doing marathons. I see us as a super competitive D3 [college] program. LOL.
We currently run over at Victor Ashe Park. It’s the most centrally located park. Excellent greenway systems. The area is very pro-running and pro-cycling. I like to put people in positions of what they enjoy doing. I want to get impact from the group and we can make decisions on what the group wants. We are running every Saturday at 8am. I would like to add some more runs in the week as the group grows and evolves.
What would you like for runners and potential runners in your city to know about your chapter of Black Men Run?
Our chapter is really a united healthy brotherhood; a space where Black men can feel welcomed and supported. If you’re serious about getting proactive about your health, we want to help you with that. We have a group of brothers that are going to hype you up, support you and help you.
Just come out, get your run in with the fellas. Saturdays at 8am, somebody will be out there. As Black men, we need to really be intentional about things that are actually out here for us.
BMR FAMILY: If you’re in the Knoxville Chapter facebook group, check them out and say hello. The brotherhood continues to grow.
Article by Atlanta Captain, James ‘JT’ Hale.