I enjoyed reading this book, although perhaps not as much as I enjoyed reading Sheehan’s earlier book “Running and Being.” This book repeated some of the same themes as the earlier book, but added a bit more perspective as Sheehan was older when writing this book. Some of the points I enjoyed unique to this book included:
- His ideas and definition of heroism — beginning with resisting the usual and habitual;
- His unique insight and thoughts of the movie Chariots of Fire;
- The cause and effect of the runner’s high; and
- Reaching and delaing with the point in life of no longer being able to run.
As with his earlier book, I would recommend this book to the serious runner.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would recommend it to any serious runner that has not already read it yet. Parts of the book can be a bit dated (it was written in 1978), but Sheehan does a masterful job of leading the reader through his journey of self-discovery through running. Reading this book and understanding Sheehan’s impact on running helps the reader discover the origins of the running boom in the U.S.
Reading the book made me realize the true intent of my blog. To share my “play” through running in hopes of spurring your own play. It might be running or walking or some team sport, but Sheehan demands that one must know and challenge their body to truly excel in all aspects of life.
This book made me an instant Sheehan fan. I look forward to reading many of his other books to learn more about running and its connection to life.
My wife’s uncle suggested reading this article in the 3/12/12 edition of Sports Illustrated. I pass along the suggestion. The article covers the inspiring story of endurance athlete, Rhiannon Hull, and the ultimate test of endurance. The authors also explore the phenomenon of athletes performing incredible feats of strength when focusing on the finish line. This five page article is well worth the read.
I recommend this book for runners that are serious about translating improved nutrition into better performance. Some parts of the book tend to drag, but I found most of the book an enjoyable read. I enjoyed learning more about topics like optimizing body composition, sports drinks, carb loading, post-workout nutrition, and dietary supplements.
This book is a must read for anyone seriously considering a half or full marathon, especially for the first time. It presents reasonable, straight-forward plans to reach the goal of completing the race. In addition, the author presents many detailed18-week training plans based on the runner’s fitness level.
The chapter topics range from nutrition to race day. Higdon lays out a step by step process that many people can follow if they have the dedication to stick to the plan. The book was recently updated in a third edition, but the second edition covers the issues just fine.
If you couldn’t tell, I’m a big Hal Higdon fan. Even if you don’t read this book, Higdon has plenty of free training material online at www.halhigdon.com. I also had the pleasure of listening to him speak during marathon week at Walt Disney World. If you have such an opportunity, don’t miss it.