Another book I read last fall that I was surprised to find Ireally enjoyed was Unbroken .This book is a historical nonfiction tale of Louis Zamperini, an Olympic runnerturned wartime hero. The running is more of the “back story” with a focus onthe historical context and the amazing resilient human nature of Louis. But,this one draws you in from the first page and, once started, I could barely putit down because I had to know what happens next. The story begins with Louis’juvenile delinquent ways, turns to his discovery of his great gift of the skillfor running and then ultimately becomes the recount of Louis’ fight, courageand journey during WWII.
Going Long is FANTASTIC! And perfect if you are going to be reading it over several days (or weeks)…it is a compilation of short stories put together by Runner’s World magazine. I loved that I could read 2-3 complete stories while getting in my cardio and then come back the next day or week to finish completely new stories. The other thing I loved about this book is that, sure, some of the stories are of the elites and the legends we all hear about often, but they also include stories of the lesser known and every day people who have just allowed running into their lives as one means of making a difference in the lives of others.
Mile Markers is one that I loved because Kristin writes the story in a way that is easy to relate to and constantly draws on the parallels seen in running and life. This was a quick read that I really enjoyed.
I would HIGHLY suggest IronWar …especially if you are a triathlete…but also even if you are not. I amnot sure if I will ever attempt a tri…maybe some day (I am a terrible swimmerand maybe haven’t gotten on a bike since I was in elementary school!?!) but Istill was drawn into this book immediately. A fantastic book documenting the younghistory of the Ironman, the stories of Mark Allen and Dave Scott, and theamazingly intense competition between the two of them in the 1989 Ironman WorldChampionship. It has been called “the greatest race ever” and the book iswritten in a way that makes you feel like you are right there as they fightneck and neck to the finish…I am pretty sure I was holding my breath throughthe entirety of the last few chapters;)
Some books I have loved that include great tips for beginnersare--- TheUltimate Beginner’s Running Guide: The Key to Running Inspired , CompleteBook of Women’s Running and KaraGoucher’s Running for Women: From First Steps to Marathons
Some people like books that talk more about the technicalaspects of running…I tend to read a few inspirational ones and then sneak onein that may teach me about form, fueling successfully, training, etc. Myfavorites in this area have been: RacingWeight , AdvancedMarathoning , and Daniels’Running Formula . I also have a strong desire to learn more aboutmindfulness (staying mentally in the present and without judgment) and the roleour mind plays in running…gotta develop that mental toughness along with ourphysical toughness right!?! So…two books I LOVE on this topic are: RUN:The Mind-Body Method of Running by Feel , RunningWithin , and Zenand the Art of Running: The Path to Making Peace with your Pace .
I will end with my absolute favorite book of all time: TheLong Run . This book was actually the first running book I ever read andwill always be my ultimate favorite. I don’t want to ruin the book for anyonewho has not read it…but this is the story of Matt Long, an NYC firefighter andincredible endurance athlete. The story tells of his fight back to Marathonerand Ironman after a debilitating accident. His courage, strength and passionbut also the realness of his frustration and fight, are inspiring andunforgettable. I will admit…I cried for a good 10 minutes at the end…buthopefully that helps tell you how truly amazingly good this book is.
Thanks again for allowing me the opportunity to share someof my favorite books with all of you! Do you like to read? Have you read any ofthese—what are your thoughts? What are your favorite books? Can you read on thetreadmill!?!
Thank you Julia - this list is incredible! I've read Born to Run, but the rest are definitely going on my to-read list. I even added a few to my Kindle for the trip, so I'll be sure to report back with my thoughts...