Terry began running at the age of 14, to stay in shape for his, at that time, sport of surfing. Terry was raised in Charleston and took to the water, as do most locals do. He attained the level of 3A, as a surfer, by the age of seventeen. That is one level below professional.
As Terry surfed, he was also drawn into running and had the ability to make a small mark in the sport. He was offered a partial scholarship to run cross country for the University of S.C., but at first, turned it down. He accepted it in his sophomore year at school and fell totally in love with the sport. He was running 70 miles per week by 1973 and by 1977, he upped his mileage and was running and finishing high in road races or winning them. He ran near five minutes per mile in the 1979 Governor's Cup 15 mile and it, being the Southern 15 mile championship at the time, gained him a ranking of being one of the 20 top distance runners in the South. He has run everything from 5k to the marathon and in 1977, he created the Charleston Running Club. By October, the club had over 400 members, as the running boom was in full stride. In that same month, he was approached by Dr. Marcus Newberry to try to form a race over the Cooper River Bridge. It was in the Electrophoresis Lab of MUSC, where Hamlin was Supervisor, that the race was born on that day.
Hamlin coached the women's competitive team of the club and formed the first "women only" race in the state. He has coached hundreds of runners and studied the science of biochemistry, kinesiology and cell metabolism as part of his coaching. In 2010, Hamlin lost his left leg. That would crush many runners, but Hamlin was back in the next Bridge Run and finished in the top 30% at the age of 59, with no training for a year.
Terry's athletes had badgered and begged him to write a book on training for years and he relented in this year. BUILDING A BETTER RUNNER-Science Based Training for Peak Performance formally releases September 3. It has already come close to the NY Times Best Seller list, and is expected to hit that number upon release. Two to three more books will be written in the next years, focusing on the positive mindset of the runner, speedwork for mid distance running and the return of a man from a life disaster.