Here are a baker’s dozen of recently published running books that are definitely worth a read.
Full Tilt Boogie: A journey into autism, fatherhood and an epic test of man and beast
Hal Walter, a runner, rancher, journalist and man about the west, has written a candid book about his numerous high-country adventures in Colorado, including parenting his son living with autism, and his experiences in the quirky sport of pack burro racing. Walter shares some amazing tales about mountain lifestyle, career struggles, family challenges and endurance feats with a thoughtful honesty as he attempts to round up a seventh pack burro racing world championship.
The Ultra Mindset
Travis Macy is a world-class endurance athlete who has summited glacial peaks in the French Alps, rappelled into cavernous limestone caves in China and run through parched deserts in Utah. In 2013, he won Colorado's Leadman competition, a high-altitude combination trail running marathon, 50-mile mountain biking race, 100-mile mountain biking race, 10K run and 100-mile trail run. He's earnest, hard-working and genuine to the core—and that's part of the secret to his success—but it's also due to a precise and particular outlook he calls the “Ultra Mindset,” principles for daily life which he says anyone can apply to athletics or everyday life. Macy illustrates those principles in this book through some of his wild adventures and amazing endurance feats.
Building Your Running Body
Want to maximize your results in running? Start from scratch by rebuilding your body for running. Pete Magill, Thomas Schwartz and Melissa Breyer have put together a comprehensive workout manual that draws on the latest research in running physiology to target all the components that go into every stride—including muscles, connective tissue, cardiovascular fitness, energy production, the nervous system, hormones, and the brain. They believe their whole-body training approach can help runners improve their race times, run longer and more comfortably while also reducing the risk of injury.
Hal Koerner's Field Guide to Ultra Running
Have you tinkered with the idea of running beyond the marathon? Although ultrarunning is still a niche discipline in the world of running, it's one of the fastest-growing segments of the sport, with an estimated 75,000 ultra finishers in the U.S. in 2013. In this comprehensive guidebook, two-time Western States 100 champion Hal Koerner lays out loads of knowledge and invaluable insights about how to train for races from 50K and beyond.
1:59: The Sub-Two-Hour Marathon Is Within Reach
Although it might seem entirely incredulous to most runners—even fast, high-level runners—there is widespread consensus in the running community, including coaches, exercise researchers and elite marathoners, that a 1:59 marathon is entirely possible. Where opinions differ, however, is when it will occur. In this book, Dr. Phil Maffetone explains why advancements in training, how elite runners race the marathon and several other factors will make this great athletic leap possible sooner than most people think.
For years, CrossFit Endurance founder Brian MacKenzie has been saying that traditional half-marathon and marathon training based only on high-mileage plans isn't ideal for most runners. Instead of building runners up, it winds up breaking them down and leaving them prone to injuries, fatigue and burnout, he says. In his new book, "Unbreakable Runner," MacKenzie tears down these traditions to reveal the new rules for fast, powerful running.
Believe Training Journal
Written and designed by professional runners Lauren Fleshman and Roisin McGettigan-Dumas, the Believe Training Journal is a year-long workbook, training log, and how-to manual aimed at helping runners push harder, find the sweet spot and use running to make life even better. It's packed with photographs, hand-written notes, practical advice, and the hard-earned secrets and street smarts that Fleshman and Ro have learned on the pro running circuit. It's beautifully designed with a soft, faux-leather cover.
Faster Higher Stronger
In "Faster, Higher, Stronger," journalist Mark McClusky takes readers behind the scenes with a new generation of athletes, coaches and scientists whose accomplishments are changing our understanding of human physical achievement and completely redefining the limits of the human body. This is a compelling deep-dive into the ever-evolving intersection of sports, science and technology.
Boring as they may seem today in the age of constant overstimulation, multi-day walking matches in the 1870s and 1880s were a true spectacle at an affordable price, complete with food vendors, flowing booze, live music, and celebrity appearances. Of course, the actual race was a spectacle itself, with the competitors downing massive quantities of champagne— thought to be a stimulant—while circumambulating a track in an exhausted and sleep-deprived state. Pedestrians competed in venues that could accommodate the typical flux of over 10,000 fans, with six-day races being the most competitive and talked about athletic events in the country. Matthew Algeo's book provides a delightful account of this little known piece of bipedal history to which our amazing sport is much indebted.
Life Outside The Oval Office
In his new, 256-page autobiography, the American track star writes about qualifying for a second Olympic team, battling with track’s governing body and his London Olympics experience. The 2013 world championships silver medalist serves up a slew of wild and funny stories about his rise from a small-town kid with a knack for the outdoors to one of the world’s top middle-distance runners, as well as some inside dirt on the world of track and field.
Robert Andrew Powell writes an honest coming-of-age story that centers around his quest to qualify for the Boston Marathon. Knocked down by a divorce and inspired by his father, Powell decided to change his mindset and circumstances by moving to Boulder, Colo., and starting to run in earnest for the first time in his life. As he progresses as a runner, he also learns much about himself and his relationship with his father.
The Terrible And Wonderful Reasons Why I Run Long Distances
Before Matthew Inman became a runner and then a funny folk hero to other runners, he was a beginner who ran to escape a tiny, obese version of himself. Inman pictured the sloppy creature with piles of flesh hanging like icicles off his frame. The 31-year-old Seattle illustrator, who’s become arguably the world’s most popular online cartoonist, would later make fun of the creature on his website, "The Oatmeal," selling it on snarky tech shirts, satirical “0.0” bumper stickers and posters that parody Nike’s empowering slogan (“Just Do It Later”) But when Inman began running a decade ago, the little beast was a terrifying motivator that chased him like a zombie and lurked only a few steps behind. When Inman ran, he ran out of fear of the beast catching him and reverting him back to his former self—an obese, insecure kid.
See Mom Run
Megan Searfoss, a mother of three daughters, picked up running because it was a time-saving and inexpensive way to exercise while also offering a way to find and maintain balance in her life. In her new book, she offers a guide for busy women like her to lose weight and get fit through running and walking, offering training plans that can realistically fit into a hectic weekly schedule.