Adventures in the Love of Running
I implore you to see exercise (and life!) not as goals to accomplish, but adventures to experience. You’ll be amazed at what you find out about yourself. – Matt Frazier
It is that statement that makes me want to learn more from a guy like Matt Frazier.
I’m not going to say I never want to run a marathon, but I can tell you it’s not currently on my to do list. Even so, I just read a book about running your first marathon.
Why I read a book about running a marathon when I don’t want to run one.
- I really respect the Author and he asked me to read it.
- I want to be a runner.
- I only planned on reading a couple of chapters.
I knew the nomeatathlete.com would become one of my go to blogs, when I read author, Matt Fraizer’s post about trail running on Zen Habits. My dreams of running all take place off road, and after reading Born to Run and finding Matt’s blog about running on a vegetarian diet, I was hooked. So hooked, that I started a project based on Matt’s cookbook, Fuel Your Run the Tarahumara Way. The Chia Chronicles are my reviews of his Chia/Pinole recipes.
I started trail running last Summer. I stopped running, but I don’t remember why, and plan to start again as soon as the snow melts. I don’t want to race or win or hit a certain number of miles. I just want to run through the woods, or on the beach. I want to run for the love of it.
As I mentioned, I had only planned on reading a few chapters of Matt’s new book, Marathon Roadmap, The Vegetarian Guide to Conquering your first 26.2, so I was pleasantly surprised when I couldn’t stop reading. Because of Matt’s easy writing style and very simple, realistic approach to running, I read the whole thing. I did breeze through some of the training chapters as I am not planning to train for a marathon, but I was really excited to find a link to an 8 week training program from Runner’s World for beginner runners.
If you are considering a marathon, this book is a great tool, with detailed training programs and recommendations. If, like me, you don’t plan to run a marathon, but have interest in running or a vegetarian diet, here are a few reasons to read the book.
- The basics. Even though the marathon training is directed to a more experienced runner, Matt covers the basics of equipment, safety, stretching and cross training that a beginner should know.
- Injury proof your stride. When I first started to talk to Matt about running, he recommended that I increase my turnover rate. (not apple turnovers people!) He was talking about how fast my feet strike the ground when I run. Instead of running with long strides, landing on your heel, he suggests short, quick strides landing mid foot. There is a chapter about how to increase your stride to 180 steps per minute, with step by step instructions.
- An adaptable plan. The book is a road map, but your goal is not to follow each step to the letter. Adapt the program to work best for you.
- Matt is not from the “no pain, no gain” camp. I love that Matt says, “Don’t Try to Run Through Pain. If something starts to hurt during your training, running through the pain isn’t going to do any good.” So often we are conditioned to push through the pain and finish a workout at any cost. Instead, Matt suggests, “Don’t be tough. Be smart.”
- Resources. Resources. Resources. This book is easy to read through, but one you will want to refer back to as your training progresses. He links everything smart about running and training, from articles, to books, to product recommendations and reviews and recipes.
- No Carnivorous Guilt.While this book is about training on a vegetarian diet, it does not go on and on about animal cruelty or compassion-less meat eaters. Instead, it focuses on the performance benefits of a vegetarian diet.
- The Perfect Smoothie Formula. It is worth buying the book for this alone. I can’t wait to put it to the test!
- Simple Meal Plan. And it really is simple.
- Recipes. For delicious dishes like Potato-Lentil Curry, Quinoa with Cashews and Oranges and No Meat Athlete Grill-Worthy Veggie Burgers.
I recommend Marathon Roadmap, The Vegetarian Guide to Conquering your first 26.2. if you are looking for practical tips or simple inspiration. With the exception of the “race day” section, the advice was just as applicable to a new runner like me, as it would be to an aspiring marathoner.
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