We had a lot of fun sharing our favorite running (and other) related book we read in 2019. Note, these are just a sampling of the books but some of our favorites. You’ll want to listen in on the details and what we loved about them. If you see my running pic and wonder why it’s the episode photo, it’s because I’m wearing my Aftershokz headphones as I read the rest of my next book; I would share which one I was listening to, but since this pic is from 2020 you’ll have to wait until next year to get that list. 🙂
I’m not sure if you can tell, but reading is a huge deal in our home. We had to cut out so many books shared in this episode and even shared below. If you want a more full list, I encourage you to contact me and I can fill you in on more either from myself or Audrey.
Before I share that full list, you’ll want to check out our sponsor, Audible, where you can get a trial membership for 30 days and then jump into the Audible Challenge 2020 (for new and current members) where if you read (listen to) 3 books of 3 hours or more by March 3rd (get it – 3/3 by 3/3?!) you can get a free $20 Amazon gift card! I’m already halfway there and my books are much longer than 3 hours. 🙂 I love listening to audiobooks and find that Audible gives me immediate access to the books I want to listen to. When I’m done with my “book from the month” I just jump back over and listen to podcasts the rest of the month. Funny thing is I never run out of things to listen to.
In the meantime, here’s just a short sample of some of the books you heard about in our episode:Anyone else listen to audiobooks when you run? Any favorites I should read? Have you read any of these?Running Related:
Can’t Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds by David Goggins: Although not exactly a running book (he is an ultra runner and discussed experiences at multiple races including the 135-mile Badwater through Death Valley) this is hugely life changing (including your training). Please note the explicit language you might expect from a Navy Seal.
Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand: A MUST! I’m not sure if a book has emotionally affected me as much as this. After finishing, it took me a while to recover to talk without breaking into tears. Seriously.
80/20 Running: Run Stronger and Race Faster by Training Slower by Matt Fitzgerald, Robert Johnson: Although I already had this mindset going into the book (I just need to more consistently apply it) this was a nice expansion to my understanding of Train Slow Race Fast! Highly encouraged to read it!
A Race Like No Other: 26.2 Miles Through the Streets of New York by Liz Robbins: A MUST if you ever plan to run the New York City Marathon!
The Rise of the Ultra Runners by Adharanand Finn: Full of anecdotal stories by one aspiring ultra runner. I wasn’t in love with this book but a good introduction into races in Europe that I might have not otherwise heard.
Training for Ultra: Ultra Running Stories from the Middle of the Pack by Rob Steger: I had no idea that Rob’s podcast was by the same author but loved his stories and recaps of some amazing races. Also love hearing from runners “like the rest of us” instead of the elite runners we hear about in books every day.
Nowhere Near First: Ultramarathon Adventures from the Back of the Pack by Cory Reese: After a heart-wrenching start to his ultra running career, this guy knows how to suffer. The book is motivating and entertaining throughout his descriptions of how he transformed into the runner he is today.
Into the Furnace: How a 135 Mile Run Across Death Valley Set My Soul on Fire by Cory Reese, Luke Thoreson: Great followup to his first book. Enjoyed hearing so many details on a race that intrigues me on so many different levels.
The Pursuit of Endurance: Harnessing the Record-Breaking Power of Strength and Resilience by Jennifer Pharr David: Not originally a trail runner, she held the FKT on the Appalachian Trail. Her stories of the trail and her experiences make it a fun listen.
North by Scott Jurek and Jenny Jurek: Have been a Scott Jurek fan for years so had to listen to this book. Enjoyed the experiences added by his wife, Jenny, possibly more so. Great listen!
Two Hours by Ed Caesar: A must-read for those that have read dozens of running books but nothing to write home about. I would put most of the other books in front of this one but still a worthy read.
Not Running Related:
Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card: It’s been years since I last heard this book. I think I caught more subtleties on the characters and their interactions as a more experienced adult.
The Learning Brain by The Great Courses: Truly educational and eye opening! Enjoyed the tips throughout on how to increase my own learning and memory potential.
Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury: Not the book I was expecting. Asked to read by my daughter, this gripping novel surprised me by its message and relevance for everyone to listen to today.
1984 by George Orwell: Another book as requested by my daughter. This book was so gripping I had to find chores around the house for a weekend to finish it. I could not walk away from this one!
The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri: Another requested by my daughter. I found this one intriguing and listened through all three lands (most just read Inferno). Reading cliff notes after each chapter helped solidify what I heard.
Hamlet by William Shakespeare: As I prepared to introduce Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead (amazing movie – check it out!) I realized I had never really read Hamlet. There are so many cultural references that I didn’t realize came from this book. The stage presentation was enjoyable and made it easier to listen to. And yes, the movie made even more sense after reading this as well! 🙂
The War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells: Yes another recommended by my daughter – can you tell she’s well read? Her writing reflects it! I expected this to be a “dated” book but loved the narrative, the story, and found myself a bit emotional at parts.
The Peloponnesian War by Thucydides: I have to admit I only got through about 15 hours of this book. Spurred to read this by my daughter (read along as she read it for class) I plowed through the book, watching YouTube videos for context. Although a classic, I gave up towards the end as she finished the book way faster than me.
Measure What Matters: How Google, Bono, and the Gates Foundation Rock the World with OKRs by John Doerr: Likely not for everyone, but a gem! I can see this being helpful for your life no matter your vocation as it can literally apply to all!
I invite you to send any book recommendations to me so I can add them to my list for 2020. Make sure to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org!
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Thank you for listening and look forward to catching up with you next time!
Coach Alex (RRCA certified running coach) and Audrey
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