Penguin Biography

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JOHN "the Penguin" BINGHAM


At 43 years old, John Bingham began the transition from 240-pound couch potato to athlete. At age 53, this popular writer and speaker has become the Pied Piper of the second running boom. John is the prototypical Renaissance man. From motorcycle mechanic to graduate advisor, from freelance musician to marathon pace leader, John brings a relentless spirit for living into everything he does. His humorous insights bring hope and inspiration to legions of fans.


  • "The Penguin Chronicles", a monthly column in the US, UK and Australia/New Zealand editions of Runner's World magazine.
  • No Need for Speed: A Beginner's Guide to the Joy of Running, Rodale, April 2002
  • The Courage to Start: A Guide to Running for Your Life, Simon & Schuster, April 1999
  • The Penguin Brigade Training Log: Breakaway Books, May 1998

Major Event Appearances

  • Boston Marathon
  • Chicago Marathon
  • Flora London Marathon
  • San Francisco Marathon
  • Columbus Marathon, Columbus, OH
  • White Rock Marathon, Dallas, TX
  • Cowtown Marathon, Ft. Worth, TX
  • Myrtle Beach Marathon
  • Marine Corps Marathon
  • New York City Marathon
  • Walt Disney World Marathon
  • Suzuki Rock N Roll Marathon
  • Country Music Marathon
  • Rock and Roll 1/2-Marathon
  • Indi Mini 500 1/2-Marathon
  • Motorola Marathon
  • Vermont City Marathon
  • Florence, Italy, Marathon
  • Wineglass Marathon
  • The Last Marathon, Antarctica
  • Bloomsday Festival, Spokane, WA
  • Athens Marathon

Summer Tours

  • 1997 Big Red Tour, 8 weeks
  • 1998 Firebird Tour, 12 weeks
  • 1999 Family Truckster Tour, 21 weeks
  • 2000 Millenium Tour, 20 weeks
  • 2001 Penguin Odyssey Tour, 20 weeks
  • 2002 No Need for Speed Tour


Points of Interest

  • Recipient of 2000 RRCA Jerry Little Memorial Journalism Excellence Award
  • Rode a motorcycle 3,500 miles and then ran the Suzuki Rock N Roll marathon
  • Completed a marathon by running 433 laps around a boat in Antarctica.
  • One of the founders of the Rock and Roll 1/2-marathon
  • Honorary race director of the Country Music Marathon

What no one knows

  • John has an earned doctorate in Education from the University of Illinois
  • John was the Associate Dean of the Conservatory of Music at Oberlin College
  • John was a professional musician and worked with Frank Sinatra, Cher, and others

Penguin Wisdom
Where do we find the time to run. It's there for us we just need to seize it. With every step we make the time we need. With every mile we create the time of our lives.





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Last Updated: February 19, 2002 11:09