While Frank and I have been running in this lovely weather, I've been focusing on form, my stride, all that good stuff. A few weeks ago I was sent a copy of The Ultimate Beginner's Running Guide. I'm far from a beginner, but I found it to be a great read.
The author Ryan Robert, lives in Homer Alaska, and logs about 1,500 miles a year running. He took what he learned from being a coach and firefighter for the Forest Service, and put together this guide to running.
The book starts with a chapter on how to run: how to choose the right footwear, the importance of proper form, breathing, and an explanation of the different heart rate zones. I liked how he focused on dynamic stretching as a warm up for a run, how static stretching does little for our muscles, and that a brisk walk, then jog, as well as rolling body movements (windmills, hoola hoop motions etc) are a good way to get ready for a run.
One other focus is on motivation, which I need once in a while! One tip was to put a dollar in a jar for each time you run...that can add up fast, which you can then use to reward yourself for putting in all those miles.
There are other sections on nutrition, how to run in adverse conditions, as well as one area that I always seem to deal with, injury prevention.
The book ends with various training schedules, depending on your fitness level, and a section on finding inspiration.
I liked this passage in particular:
What is wonderful about running is that it is completely under our control. There are no gears, helmets, poles, clips, bindings, or other mechanical trappings to buy and fuss with. Running is only us and the trail or road, and the faith that what we are doing will bring its own rewards in time. We are in charge of how complicated or simple we make it, how we treat our bodies in the time between runs, and ultimately our entire attitude toward running.
You can find The Ultimate Beginner's Running Guide on Amazon.com, just click here. I read this book on my laptop after I downloaded Amazon's Kindle for PC application.
Now for the giveaway, three readers will win a digital copy (Yay! open to all readers everywhere!), to enter, just leave me a comment. I'll choose the winners on Sunday March 25th.
You can also check out their facebook page here, for other chances to win.
*Note, I was provided with a copy of this book for the purpose of this review, my thoughts on the book are my own.