I pick it over sleep. I dedicate hours of my week to it. A chunk of my salary goes towards races, new sneakers, new shorts, etc., etc. It’s an addiction. When I’m not running, I think about running. I talk about running. I have a group of friends that will spend hours dissecting paces, running routes, races and so forth.
It’s been like this since I started running. As soon as I get the hang of it, I wanted more. I wanted to learn more, talk about it more and share more ideas. My heart aches when I learn of other injured runners, because I, too know what it’s like to have it ripped away from you. I love the against-the-odds stories. I adore tales of triumph over tragedy. My heartbeat quickens when I watch races that come down to the last few seconds. I just love it all.
So, while I cant spend every free hour on the pavement, as much as I’d like to, I learn as much as I can about it. Listed below are a few of my favorite resources. Obviously, the list is not all-encompassing, it’s just some that I particularly enjoy. And it goes out to runners of all types. When I first started running, I was nervous about being an “imposter.” People will know I’m not a “real” runner.
However, I’ve come to learn there is no such discrepancy. As John Bingham said, “If you run, you are a runner.”
My next few posts are going to be about my favorite running resources. So, if you’re starting out or just want to dive in deeper … this is for you:
Last summer, I took the book on vacation with me, and could not put it down. I finished it by the end of the first night. McDougall seeks out the Tarahumara Indian tribe to learn about their running technique, and their ability to run huge distances without injury. This inspired me to look into barefoot running, until my physical therapist told me absolutely not. It’s a well-written and entertaining story that will have you putting your sneakers on before you finish.
I finished this book last month and it’s been on my mind ever since. Jurek, an accomplished ultramarathoner, is something of a legend in his field. He made the transition from a meat and potatoes guy to a devoted vegan early in his career, and he intertwines the two lifestyles (ultrarunning and veganism) into an invigorating tale. He focuses on the simple pleasures of life, like running in nature and eating clean and whole foods. As an added bonus, he includes relevant recipes at the end of each chapter. After reading this, I am inspired to do a 30-day vegan challenge (I’m a vegetarian), to see how it affects my running.
If you have ever run a marathon, or even thought of running one, you will enjoy this film as it follows six runners training for the Chicago Marathon. The athletes range from first timers to an Olympic Bronze Medalist, and are of mixed ages, genders and ethnicities. Training for a marathon requires dedication and perseverance and filmmakers accurately captured the runners’ triumphs and struggles.
This movie chronicles the career of Steve Prefontaine, a talented and accomplished runner in the 1970s. After setting the U.S. record in the 5,000-meter run, Prefontaine disappointed in the 1972 Olympics. While training to redeem himself in the 1976 Olympics, he was killed in a 1975 car accident. The story of his career and untimely death are fascinating.
While I love Runner’s World, and read every issue cover to cover, I also enjoy reading Women’s Running. By limiting the articles to solely female-related running issues, they are able to cover more subjects I am interested in and can relate to. Let’s face it, while both genders can share a love of a sport, we react differently both physically and emotionally and Women’s Running is able to zero in on our gender.
Running Times is more specialized than Runner’s World. They zero on elite athletes and races, focusing on techniques on becoming a better runner. I enjoy reading it because I feel like it has less filler and has better advice.
What are your favorite running books, movies and magazines?
Kelly is our resident triathlete with a passion for happy hour. Follow her on Twitter.