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Sunday, July 18, 2010

Book Review: Chicken Soup for the Soul: Runners

I got up early this morning (5:30) to get in a run before it gets too hot today.  Unfortunately, the radar suggests I wait awhile, so since I've entered my awake mode and running is on my mind, I thought I'd share a great book for anyone who runs, or wants to know why the heck people do run instead of golf, bowl, or just sit and watch TV.

Chicken Soup for the Soul: Runners by Jack Canfield and many others, is chock full of stories about people who run.  Some of them have run for years, some are just starting; others are returning to running after many years of doing something else in life.  Not all are "elite" runners; most are everyday people who find that running fulfills something in their life and gives them a time to reflect, think, and connect with friends.  Moms get up early and run before the kids are up, so they can better face the day with a cheerful attitude.  Some began to run because they knew someone who couldn't, so they run to honor their loved one.  And some run because a friend talked them into it!  It can be that simple.

I raced through these stories ( no pun intended!).  Some made me smile, others brought a tear or two, but most of all, they inspired me to keep running.  I'm not alone in feeling lousy during a run, or wanting to give up, but still pushing.  I wish I had read this before I ran my half marathon in Council Bluffs!  I think it would have made me feel better to have finished, even though I didn't perform as well as I wanted to.  

There is also a section in the book about people's experiences with triathalons.  Now I must admit it has crossed my mind a few times, and Bud has said "You should either run an ultra-marathon or do a triathalon" ( does he know who he's talking to?!).  These stories were especially interesting; people who have overcome great physical problems (double amputee, for example) to train and participate.  Makes you feel kinda ashamed to be sitting on your butt.  

I've started my training for my Sept. 5th half marathon, and this book will keep me moving forward over the next 6 weeks to reach my goal of having fun, running light on my feet, and finding the beauty in the scenery I pass as I run.  And most importantly, appreciating that I am healthy enough and lucky enough to be able to run.  

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