DIARY: Running with the Legends

There are few happier days in our mountain valley cottage than when a new package arrives stamped “Amazon.co.uk”. Inside is always my latest science/history book and, more importantly, the newest tome for my collection of running lore.

“Running with the Legends” by Michael Sandrock has had me hooked from Kenny Moore’s foreword to the first chapter on Emil Zatopek which I am currently reading. The book covers the philosophy, peculiarities, achievements and training of twenty-one running legends mainly from the 60s to 80s.

I will be looking forward to reviewing this encyclopaedia which stunned me with its size (592 pages) something I could have predicted if I had paid notice of the publisher: Human Kinetics.

My second purchase is much smaller: Ryan Hall’s slim 208 page account of his preparations for the Boston Marathon. The format is new and familiar at the same time as the book divides into mini-chapter each showing a day in a training diary format.

I have limited knowledge of Ryan Hall apart from his well-publicised exploits in the half-marathon and marathon but it should be interesting to get a day-by-day insight into one of the few modern Western marathoners to better the performances of our predecessors twenty years ago and go toe-to-toe with the Africans.