Interview: Battery Creek junior Mark Rennix

Battery Creek junior distance runner Mark Rennix Jr. talks about goals for this season and future. Rennix started to run in the seventh grade and is continuing his family tradition of runners.

Comments on Rennix from coach Tyrone Pierce
"Mark Rennix is an outstanding student athlete who holds a 3.8 grade point average and is ranked 14th out of 231 students in his junior class. He eats and sleeps track and cross country. Mark practices every day and even runs on the weekends. He is very likeable young man and is loved by his teammates. Mark is a lieutenant in our Marine ROTC program and he is also a captain on the track team. It has been a pleasure to have coached him for three years and he is a joy to be around."

Full name:
Mark Owen Rennix  Jr.
Date of birth: Oct. 22, 1992
Hobbies: running, basketball, swimming
Academic interest: physical education
Event PRs: 5k - 17:17, 1600 - 4:36.90, 3200 - 10:31

scrunners: How did you become involved in your sport?
rennix: My dad wanted me to run track since his whole side of the family did and I thought I would give it a shot since I always considered myself to be some what fast.
scrunners: When did you become involved in the sport?
rennix: I started to run track in seventh grade and cross country in ninth.
scrunners: What obstacles have you faced?
rennix: I have faced a handful of injuries from my leg to my heart, but now I'm back to full health.
scrunners: What have been the high points of your career?
rennix: The high points of my career so far have been winning the region track meet last year as a team, and also being the Class AAA State runnerup in the same season. Also, I was very proud of my cross country team this year that placed seventh at state, which is the best showing ever by Battery Creek cross country. Lastly, my biggest individual high point has to be last week in Florida when I ran a 10-second PR in the 1600, running a 4:36, I really suprised myself.
scrunners: How did you get involved with track and field?
rennix: My parents kind of pushed me to, but I started to really get competitively involved in the 10th grade after I decided not to play soccer, like I did my freshman year.
scrunners: When did you start to compete?
rennix: I started to compete in the seventh grade at Robert Smalls Middle School.
scrunners: What was your first competition like?
rennix: My first competition was crazy. For some reason I thought I could do everything and I ran the mile, the half mile, the 4x100-meter relay, and the 4x200-meter relay. I had never felt so cramped up and tired in my life, and that was the last time I ran four events like that.
scrunners: Do you have parents, siblings or other relatives/friends that are involved in sports?
rennix: My dad ran track and played soccer all through high school and then went on to play soccer at college. My mom played field hockey in high school and my sister is currently also running cross country and track.
scrunners: How have these people affected your career?
rennix: My whole family has affected me in some way. I think with me and my sister both running at the high school level now that our house is starting to become a running home and I can always count on majority of my family to be at every single event, big or small.
scrunners: Is there someone other than a family member or friend who has inspired you
rennix: I can't say that a single professional athlete has inspired me but just mainly my friends, coaches, and teamates.
scrunners: What goals do you have as an individual for this season?
rennix: For this season, I hope and plan to medal in the 1600 and give myself a shot at being the state champion. Also I want to qualify in the 3200 and repeat as qualifier in the 4x800 relay.
scrunners: What goals does your team have this season?
rennix: Our team is extremly hungary for a state championship, after coming so close last year we can really taste it. We are all working hard each and everyday to reach that goal.
scrunners: What long-term goals you have for your running career—where do you see yourself in three to six years?
rennix: In three to six years I definitly see myself running at college.
scrunners: How is training?
rennix: Training right now is going very well. I feel that this season has been my best training specifically for peaking at the right time and I'm the most confident that I have ever been.
scrunners: What have you done recently for training?:
rennix: Recently I have been training very smart with intervals, fartlek and tempo runs, longer distance on the weekends, and of course a few easier days here and there.
scrunners: Did you go to a camp prior to the season?
rennix: I did not go to camp prior to this track seaon. I did attend a cross country camp at Duke University over the summer of my sophomore year but could not return this summer because of an injury.
scrunners: How has this training equipped you to reach your goals and help your team reach its goals?
rennix: My training as I said before has equipped me to run my best times at the most important moments which are region, state qualifier, and of course state.
scrunners: What is your favorite event to compete in?
rennix: My favorite event to compete in has to be the mile because it's not too short and it's not too long. I like it because it really shows who has the most guts.
scrunners: What pre-race/event traditions you have?
rennix: During track I don't really have any major pre-race traditions except you will always find me jumping up and down right before the gun. Though in cross country the varsity team always makes sure to squeeze in time for the Lords Prayer.
scrunners: What are your favorite subjects in school?
rennix: My favorite subject in school has always been math because I seem to excel in it.
scrunners: How do you balance school and athletics?
rennix: I seem to balance out school and athletics by always saving time to do any work after my workout or meet, and I can always count on my mom to give me a reminder...or two.
scrunners: What keeps you motivated to do your best in class and on the course/track?
rennix: That's an easy one, because everyone knows that if you want to move on to the college level that you have to not only shine on the track but also in the classroom. I don't know how many times I have heard that both from my parents and also my coaches, and I couldn't agree more.
scrunners: Have you considered competing in college?
rennix: Yes, most defintely.
scrunners: What are your goals for your post-high school career?
rennix: To compete in college and get a degree, and move on to be a P.E. teacher along with coaching track and cross country at the high school level. I also want to run more longer distance races like marathons and half marathons.
scrunners: What’s one thing you would do with unlimited time and resources?
rennix: I would train for the Olympics because it has always been a dream of mine and I love watching the summer Olympics every four years.