Every once in a while, I stumble across a book that really hits home. This is one of them.
I don’t even remember where I first saw this book – more than likely thanks to one of you – but as soon as I saw the title, I knew I had to have it. Kind of like some new, really cool running thingamabob. So two minutes and a quick click onto Amazon later, this bad boy was ordered and on its way.
As I anxiously waited for its arrival from the book stork, (okay maybe not THAT anxiously – I actually forgot I had ordered it #Imadoofus) – I went about my training as usual. Still not running yet, I was biding my time and letting all my various aches and pains heal before hitting the road again. A couple of weeks went by when the book finally showed up and right into my trusty gym bag it went. Little did I know, my literary – and running – psyches were about to be challenged.
Book in hand and thirty minutes on the recumbent bike went by before I even knew it, I was that caught up in Amby’s words. Amby Burfoot, an editor-at-large for Runner’s World magazine, and a fellow native Connecticutian, (yup, made that one up too), won the Boston Marathon in 1968 and has run more miles than I can even count. The Runner’s Guide to the Meaning of Life is his story of what all his years of running has meant to him. And so much more to those of us who do. SO much more.
I have a sneaking suspicion that, aside from the differing points of view on listening to music while running, Amby and I are long-lost relatives. This is based on no other assumption than this.
Amby considers this “greatest running song of all time” – at least according to this Black Dog – as one of his all-time favorites. Anyone who knows me, or at least knows the three wild dogs who helped raise me, (aka my brothers), fully understand where I’m coming from here. My heart may belong to Bon Jovi – and let’s face it girls, who’s doesn’t? – and my dupa may move to Pitbull, but my ultimate move-it music belongs to the Boss. See? Cousins, at least. Gotta be.
I don’t want to give anything away. ANYTHING. This book is just too darn good for that. All I’m going to tell you is if you’re low on mantras, you’ll find plenty to refill your motivational tank. Need to look at this crazy sport in a different way? Check out pages 1-150. Feel like meeting the man himself? Attend the Manchester Thanksgiving Day Road Race on any given year. He hasn’t missed a one since about 1963.
So if you’re still sitting here reading my senseless, dollar-flying drivel, then go to Amazon and order what should be required reading for every runner. Go. Now. GO. I’ll even make it easy for you. You’re welcome.
Enjoy the ride.
Have you ever had a book just “speak” to you? What was it?