"Running is really group-oriented," Rodgers said. "A lot comes from the people around you, whether it's your husband or wife, your coach or your teammates. All of these things are huge."
Huge was Rodgers during those years in the late '70s, too. He twice broke the American marathon record in Boston, with his times of 2 hours, 9 mnutes, 55 seconds in 1975 and 2 hours, 9 minutes, 27 seconds in 1979. Rodgers also competed for the U.S. Olympic team at the '76 Montreal Olympics.
And he's kept running ever since, although he said he stopped running full-length marathons in the early 1990s.
"You really can't rely on your doctor alone to help you take care of your health and fitness," Rodgers said. "They're going to take care of you after you're sick. What you have to do is take care of yourself, so you don't have to go see [the doctor]. That's how runners operate; that's how we live our lives. It's a very simple sport."