My 5 Favorite Running Books

Hey everyone!

First off, let me say that the 24 hour flu that I thought I had really turned out to be more of a 36 hour variety. I thought I was feeling better, dropped the kids off at school, went to work and then decided to try to eat something with substance. Thankfully, it didn’t come back up but it really, really wanted to. I left work and collapsed on the couch for 6 hours sleeping it off. I’m feeling almost back to normal except my muscles are super stiff. Lying in the fetal position for hours and hours will do that to you! Yesterday morning, I rolled out my yoga mat for a gentle practice that loosened it all up. Hopefully, I’ll have enough energy back to attempt a run today.

half lord of the fishes pose -

One of my goals for 2013 is to read at least six books. I love to read but it’s gone by the wayside as life gets busier. I also have a little blog reading habit that’s getting in the way. I’ve read five books so far this year (yay me!). I actually feel a little ashamed admitting that it’s ONLY been five books. Kind of sad when there was a time I’d read five books in a month!

favorite running books -

A couple of the books that I’ve read so far this year have been all about running. Why not? I love talking about it so why not read about it? The following 5 books are my favorite running related books (so far). Four of the books I have on Kindle that I re-read often. Every time I do, I find myself more and more in love with running.

1. Mile Markers by Kristin Armstrong

By far, my favorite running book. Kristin makes me want to lace up my running shoes, find a running buddy and just GO! The way she applies life lessons to running is perfect.I found myself shaking my head “YES!” so many times the first time I read it. I’ve re-read it countless number of times and never tire of it. Her postings on Runner’s World website are what inspired the book. The new postings are something that I look forward to. She has a way of saying exactly what you need at the right time even though you may not know you need it.


2. Run Like a Mother

3. Train Like a Mother

Run Like a Mother and Train Like a Mother are two more books that I find myself reading over and over. The stories are of real women, with real lives and still are serious bad ass mother runners (BAMR for short). I don’t think you even necessarily have to be a mother to enjoy both books.ย  Reading the stories makes you feel like you are talking with friends on a long run. Dimity and Sarah have created a tribe of mother runners that seriously kick butt. FYI – there will be a live streaming of an evening with Dimity and Training Peaks tonight, July 24, discussing the 10 Truths of Running for Mother Runners – or Busy People. Click HERE for the link or if you live in Boulder, CO show up in person!

4. Born to Run

Born to Run

This book sparked the barefoot running revolution, no doubt. Of course, it peaked my interest in more natural running but it also made me even more excited about running. The story of a people whoย  run because it’s part of them. It’s not about pace and splits. It’s about the experience and the enjoyment that comes from running. The one main point I always take from this book after reading it, is running is not something I have to do. It’s something that I get to do. If you are a runner, you get this. If you are not, read this book and you might understand it a little bit more.



5. Eat and Run


From the moment I started to read, Eat and Run, I was hooked. Not because I always wantedย  to run an ultra but because Scott grew up in the area that I went to college. In fact, he even talks about training with one of my professors. His early training was in areas that I knew about. Skiing the Birkie? That’s a HUGE deal in the upper Midwest! The recipes in the book are outstanding. One of my favorites is the Carob Chia Pudding and my modified version of his Adzuki Bean Brownies. While I can’t say he completely sold me on running Ultra’s, I did have a brief moment of thinking it sounded like the best thing ever!


What are your favorite running books?

How many books have you read this year? Am I the only one who’s slacking off?

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40 comments on “My 5 Favorite Running Books

  1. Born to Run tops my list! I loved everything about it. I still would like to read Scott J’s book, too, and I’m sure Kristin A’s book is very inspirational. My all-time favorite book is “Once a Runner.” Classic!
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  2. I liked Mile Markers and love Train like a mother. I have also enjoyed – A Life Without Limits by Chrissie Wellington; Run! By Dean Karnazes; and Fitness Confidential by Vinnie Tortorich and Dean Lorey. I miss the days when I could read a book in a day or two. Hard to make it through 2 sentences in a day! I LOVE reading everyone’s blogs…people blog about interesting and relatable things all the time. Some great amateur writers out there. My blog reading has replaced my magazine reading.

  3. Born to Run is an awesome book! And Mile Markers is going on my Kindle download list ASAP! I just checked out What I Talk About When I Talk About Running and can’t wait to get started. And I hear ya…I love to read, but it’s getting harder to carve out the time. I usually catch up when I go on a business trip and have lots of solo time on the plane and in my hotel room.
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  4. Years ago when running one mile felt like an accomplishment, I read a book called Running with Angels. It’s the story of an obese woman with two special need kids who had also lost two children. Taking care of herself was her last priority. However, one day she challenged herself to walk around the block and soon she was training for a marathon.

  5. “Born to Run” is definitely my favorite running book, and potentially one of my favorite 5 books I’ve read in the last couple of years.

    John L. Parker’s “Once a Runner” and “Again to Carthage” are very good fiction books.

    Hope you’re feeling better!

  6. UGH BEING SICK IS MISERABLE!!! ๐Ÿ™ I don’t really get sick,but I get crazy stomach aches (like now) that definitely put me in my place!! GRR!
    And to be honest, I have never really looked into running books at all! I am sure they’re really inspirational though!

  7. This is perfect! I’m looking for new books to read because I plan to do nothing while on vacation. Well, I guess I have to watch the kids…I want to read Kristin’s book. I love her column in Runner’s World. Definitely going to download that one! Thanks for these.
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    1. You’ll love Kristin’s book! And do tell how you can manage to read and watch your kids while on vacation. Mine always seem to jump on the book that I’m reading. ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Thanks for sharing your favourites! I’ve wanted to read “Run like a Mother” for some time now but kept forgetting about it. …. and now I am ordering it online ๐Ÿ™‚
    Sure hope you are feeling better soon, I’ve had a nasty head cold/cough this last week and I just wish it would go away so I can get back to working out again.
    Anna – Piper’s Run recently posted..What I Ate Wednesday: The Good, Bad and Yummy. #wiawMy Profile

  9. From this I’ve only read “Born to Run” which I loved, but I will have to put all the others in queue…you give them such rave reviews, how can I not read them! I think I am ready to lace up my shoes & go for a midnight run just from reading this post!! xo

  10. Thanks for the book suggestions. Have you considered listening to audio books while you run? I love it for long solo runs and I think you can count audio books in your total

  11. I posted a similar list on my blog earlier this summer! I love reading, and generally have at least one running book in the queue at any given time ๐Ÿ™‚ Two of my favorites are ‘Running Through the Wall – Personal Encounters with the Ultramarathon’ (interesting to read even for someone with no desire to do an ultra), and ‘A Life Without Limits’ by Chrissie Wellington. Currently I’m reading ‘Running with the Kenyans’ and really liking it!
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