Never thought I’ll publish a book, let alone become a runner. Learning to run and then writing about it has been an incredibly hard, long but gratifying experience. Not exactly sure when the seed of an idea to write a book was planted, but I think it might’ve been during the 2012 San Francisco Half Marathon. There’s something exhilarating about running across the Golden Gate Bridge barefooted with the fog rolling in. Maybe it was the runner’s high or just the fact that I couldn’t believe that I was running with the pack; I had to write about it. This book is not about barefoot running, it’s about barefoot running style, a way of running that’s kinder and gentler to your body.
Un-learning to Run
Why un-learn? I’m 41, never been a runner my whole life. In the last year or so, I had to practically rebuild and teach my body to run distances much longer than your average jog and not get injured in the process. In just under a year, these techniques and training has allowed me to run two half marathons per-week at a pace of 8:30 minutes/mile. More importantly though, I’m coming home without injuries. I would say the book had two primary motivations:
- Sharing my experience was the first one. To tell anyone who would listen the exhilaration and joys I was feeling in running through trails. Self propulsion is the most beautiful thing. Besides, the realization that just the simple act of getting up and moving your legs can do away most of heart attacks, hypertension, diabetes, obesity and high cholesterol is amazing.
- Injury free running for many late-bloomers is hard because of the breakneck pace of our lives. It’s hard to find time to run. But, what if you could incorporate elements of running as part of your daily life? Between computer breaks, waiting to pick up kids from soccer, etc. I wanted to come up with a set of drills and exercises that I could do all day. I have no intentions of becoming a professional runner, but I do want to run distances longer than 10 miles, enjoy them and come back without hurting.
Un-learning to Run is a book for late-bloomers, busy adults and professionals that want to take up running, but don’t know where to begin. I broke the book into three sections: Technique, Training and Therapy and interspersed through these sections is a narrative of my own experience as I crossed one hurdle after the other. Through fits and starts, the book was revised multiple times over the last 8 months as I kept learning new things about running and my body, but I’m happy how the final version turned out. The Un-learning to Run book also includes an MP4 video where I demonstrate the things that I continue doing to get better at running. Of all things about the book, if it makes you get up, out and give running a try, I’ve done my job. Happy running and hope to see you out on the trails.
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