Long before Cory Reese strapped on his first pair of running shoes, he learned the key to being a successful ultrarunner: He knew how to suffer. In "Nowhere Near First," Cory shares his deeply personal story about experiencing his father's suicide at a young age, and how this led to a career in endurance running and a desire to live life to the fullest. "Nowhere Near First" is a humorous, captivating, and uplifting account of Cory's memorable ultramarathon experiences. Not only does Cory's entertaining and powerful writing allow readers a unique perspective into the challenges and rewards of running, but it also inspires each of us to turn tragedy into triumph. "Cory Reese writes with humor, humbleness and honesty. His story is both uplifting and real, and his tales of persistence and perseverance are sure to inspire, whether you're at the front of the pack or nowhere near first. Regardless of the title, this book's a winner!"~ Dean Karnazes, author of Ultramarathon Man: Confessions of an All-Night Runner "Cory Reese's book, Nowhere Near First, is an immensely entertaining and profoundly educational story about overcoming challenges to forge a meaningful life. Reese's story is must-read for people looking to find meaning and purpose in modern-day society." ~ Karl Hoagland, Publisher, UltraRunning Magazine "Cory has penned a very personal account of overcoming hardship in his personal and athletic life. Nowhere Near First tells his story of perseverance and survival in a vivid, down and dirty way that peaks with his extraordinarily positive way of looking at life."~ Marshall Ulrich, author of Running On Empty: An Ultramarathoner's Story of Love, Loss, and a Record-Setting Run Across America
Presents the story of a marathon runner as he describes the conditions that must be endured during competitions whose distances extend hundreds of miles and discusses why he is driven to participate in such an extreme sport.
When life turns up the heat, you have two choices. You can bend and break, or you can step boldly into the furnace and let your soul catch fire. Into The Furnace explores the inner workings of bravery, hope, and passion. These themes are framed against the backdrop of the Badwater Ultramarathon - a 135 mile race across the hottest place on the planet, Death Valley. Cory Reese has walked into the furnace. He has faced adversity, both in running and in life. His book captures the essence of what it means to suffer, what it means to persevere, and ultimately, what it means to create a life of clarity and purpose.
Author: Ed Ayres
Publisher: The Experiment
Release Date: 2013-08-20
Genre: Sports & Recreation
“It soon becomes clear that this book isn’t just about an athletic race. It’s also about the human race” (Bloomberg Businessweek). Having run in more than six hundred races over the span of fifty-five years, Ed Ayres is a legendary distance runner—and this book is his urgent exploration of the connection between individual endurance and a sustainable society. The Longest Race begins at the starting line of the 2001 JFK 50 Mile—the nation’s oldest and largest ultramarathon and, like other such races, it’s an epic test of human limits and aspiration. At age sixty, his sights set on breaking the age-division record, Ayres embarks on a course over the rocky ridge of the Appalachian Trail, along the headwind-buffeted towpath of the Potomac River, and past momentous Civil War sites such as Harpers Ferry and Antietam. But even as Ayres focuses on an endurance runner’s familiar concerns—starting strong and setting the right pace, controlling his breathing, overcoming fatigue, and staying mindful of the course ahead—he finds himself as preoccupied with the future of our planet as with the finish line. A veteran journalist and environmental editor, Ayres reveals how the skills and mindset necessary to complete an ultramarathon are also essential for grappling anew with the imperative to endure—not only as individuals, but as a society—and not just for fifty miles, but over the real long haul, in a unique meditation that “ought to be required reading even for people who have never run a step” (The Boston Globe). “He seamlessly moves between discussing running to exploring larger life issues such as why we run, our impact on the environment, and the effects of the nation’s declining physical fitness . . . Thought provoking.” ―Booklist “To read this book is to run alongside a seasoned athlete, a deep thinker, and a great storyteller. And Ayres doesn’t disappoint: He is the best kind of running companion, generously doling out hilarious stories and hard-won insights into performance conditioning and the human condition. His lifetime of ultra-running and environmental writing drive his exploration of what keeps us running long distances―and what it might take to keep the planet from being run into the ground.” ―Nature Conservancy magazine
Author: Sarah Lavender Smith
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
Release Date: 2017-06-01
Genre: Sports & Recreation
The sport of trail running is booming as more runners seek more adventurous routes and a deeper connection with nature. Not only are runners taking to the trail, but a growing number are challenging themselves to go past the conventional 26.2-mile marathon point. The time is right for a book that covers everything a runner needs to safely and successfully run and race trails, from 5Ks to ultra distances. Like a trusted coach, The Trail Runner’s Companion offers an inspiring, practical, and goal-oriented approach to trail running and racing. Whether readers are looking to up their distance or tackle new terrain, they’ll find sophisticated, yet clear advice that boosts performance and enhances well-being. Along the way, they’ll learn: Trail-specific techniques and must-have gear What to eat, drink, and think—before, during, and after any trail run How to develop mental tenacity and troubleshoot challenges on longer trail adventures Colorful commentary on the characters and culture that make the sport special With an engaging, encouraging voice, including tips and anecdotes from well-known names in the sport, The Trail Runner's Companion is the ultimate guide to achieving peak performance—and happiness— out on the trails. "Sarah Lavender Smith has long been one of trail running’s finest and most insightful writers, and her first book, The Trail Runner’s Companion, ties everything together for all trail runners, from newbies to veterans and all abilities in between. She expertly and empathetically describes how one should train, eat, drink, and think while becoming a trail runner. But perhaps most importantly of all, she tells us what it means to be a trail runner—why this journey, in her words, 'all the way up to the summit and back down,' is worth the effort. If you already are a trail runner, The Trail Runner’s Companion will make you want to become a better trail runner. If you aren’t yet a trail runner, The Trail Runner’s Companion will make you want to become one.” - John Trent, longtime ultrarunner, race director, Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run board member, and award-winning sportswriter "The Trail Runner's Companion is a must-have for all trail runners, both new and experienced. It brings a wealth of knowledge and entertaining stories to keep you engaged in the valuable content of the book. If only I had The Trail Runner's Companion to read before my first trail race, I could have avoided so many mistakes! I highly recommend it.” - Kaci Lickteig, 2016 UltraRunning Magazine UltraRunner of the Year and Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run champion
In his follow-up to the best-selling Ultramarathon Man—which Sports Illustrated called "fascinating" and the New York Times said was "full of euphoric highs"—world-renowned ultramarathoner Dean Karnazes chronicles his unbelievable exploits and explorations in gripping detail. Karnazes runs for days on end without rest, across some of the most exotic and inhospitable places on earth, including the Australian outback, Antarctica, and the Tenderloin District of San Francisco. From the downright hilarious to the truly profound, the linked stories in Run! create an unforgettable tableau, providing readers with the ultimate escape and offering a rare glimpse into the mind-set and motivation of an extreme athlete. Karnazes addresses the pain and perseverance and also charts his emotional state as he pushes the edges of human achievement. The tales of the friendships he's cultivated on his many adventures around the world warm the heart and are sure to captivate and inspire readers whether they run great distances, modest distances, or not at all.
117 marathons, 52 days, 32 pairs of shoes, 57 years old: A fascinating glimpse inside the mind of an ultramarathon runner and the inspirational saga of his phenomenal journey running across America. The ultimate endurance athlete, Marshall Ulrich has run more than 100 foot races averaging over 100 miles each, completed 12 expedition-length adventure races, and ascended the Seven Summits - including Mount Everest - all on his first attempt. Yet his run from California to New York- the equivalent of running two marathons and a 10K every day for nearly two months straight - proved to be his most challenging effort yet. Featured in the recent documentary film, Running America, Ulrich clocked the 3rd fastest transcontinental crossing to date and set new records in multiple divisions. In Running on Empty, he shares the gritty backstory, including brushes with death, run-ins with the police, and the excruciating punishments he endured at the mercy of his maxed-out body. Ulrich also reached back nearly 30 years to when the death of the woman he loved drove him to begin running - and his dawning realization that he felt truly alive only when pushed to the limits. Filled with mind-blowing stories from the road and his sensational career, Ulrich's memoir imbues an incredible read with a universal message for athletes and nonathletes alike: face the toughest challenges, overcome debilitating setbacks, and find deep fulfillment in something greater than achievement Watch a Video
Ultramarathons don't leave much room for mistakes. Don't learn the hard way; get a jump on training for an ultramarathon with Hal Koerner's Field Guide to Ultrarunning, a comprehensive guide to running 30 to 100 miles and beyond, written by one of the most experienced athletes in the sport. Hal Koerner is among America's top ultrarunners with podium results in more than 90 ultramarathons. In his smart, down-to-earth Field Guide, Koerner shares hard-earned wisdom, field-tested habits and practices, and reliable tips and guidelines to help you prepare for your most epic runs. You will read engaging stories of Koerner's own training and racing as well as insights and practical advice on trail running technique, proper fueling, race day game plans, and key mental strategies to carry you to the finish line. The guide offers three detailed training plans to prepare for 50K, 50-mile to 100K, and 100-mile ultramarathons.
Despite believing he was bionic as a child, Ira Rainey was far from an elite athlete with superhuman running abilities like the ones he read about in books. He was in fact an overweight and unfit slacker who felt a bit sorry for himself because he had sore feet. Sure he ran a bit, but he also sat around a lot and ate and drank too much. Why? Because he could, and because he was a delusional optimist who thought everything would always be just fine. That was until a friend was diagnosed with terminal cancer and given months to live. It was an event that would push Ira to tackle his apathy towards life and take on the challenge of becoming an ultramarathon runner, pushing himself to go further than he had ever gone before. Award winning, Fat Man to Green Man: From Unfit to Ultramarathon is a warm and humorous account of one man’s quest to uncover his true super powers as he journeys from fat to fit, and taking in everything that came between the two. It is a story of fields and friendships; mud and maps; but more importantly learning how to push yourself to achieve what you would never believe you could – and how to deal with the consequences. Fat Man to Green Man won the silver award for running books in The 2014 Running Awards, an award voted for by runners. Ira Rainey, with Fat Man to Green Man, was also a shortlisted finalist for New Writer of the Year in The British Sports Book Awards 2014. “Ira Rainey’s lifestyle transformation is an extraordinary example of what can be accomplished with passion and conviction. Fat Man to Green Man is an inspirational story of how the seemingly impossible can come true. A must-read for anyone looking to make a positive change.” - Dean Karnazes – World-renowned endurance athlete and NY Times bestselling author “Rainey is proof that ultradistance races can be completed by middle-aged mortals and not just extreme endurance athletes with a penchant for pain.” - Men’s Fitness Magazine “The ending? It’s not what you will expect, but it will see you re-appraise everything in life you thought was certain. We think you will be inspired and, like us, are certain you may lose a few tears before you reach it.” - Running Fitness Magazine “It’s an inspirational tale of Ira’s battle with inner demons and ill health…I felt as if I was right beside him…” - Trail Running Magazine “So many things are covered here, the back to back training runs, the speed work (I was actually a bit intmidated by how fast he can knock out a 5K), the nutrition and weight loss and dealing with injury and recovery. He discovered that he was not bionic but overall he was very capable of running long distances and recalling the tales very vividly.”- James Adams – Ultramarathon runner and author of Running and Stuff “At times laugh out loud funny, at others quite poignant (the parts where Ira faces the impending loss of a dear friend are especially touching) this book is a fun take on one man’s journey to becoming an ultra runner, and finding himself in the process.” - UltrarunnerPodcast “Dean Karnazes taught us about what it takes to be at the very top of ultra running, wowing us in the process while Ira, inspired by Dean, gives us an insight of ultra running that the rest of us could aspire to.” - The Running Stories
Author: Krissy Moehl
Publisher: Page Street Publishing
Release Date: 2015-12-01
Genre: Health & Fitness
Take Your Training to New Heights with This One-Stop Manual on Ultras With fifteen years running and competing around the world under her belt, Krissy Moehl is a top female ultramarathon runner, respected by her peers and an inspiration to runners everywhere. Between Moehl's positive and encouraging attitude and her deep knowledge and enthusiasm for the sport, there's no one better to prepare and train you for your first ultra and beyond! Moehl will become your guide to completing a 50K, 50-mile or 100-mile race. Her experience translates into the most effective and easy-to-follow training method, broken down into phases to help all runners take it to the next level and accomplish their goals. She shares her love of the sport by providing helpful tips, bonus content and personal stories. Her commitment to growing the sport and passion for coaching others running their first is evident in the care she's taken to create detailed plans and lifestyle adjustments. With Moehl, you will find all the resources and encouragement you need to succeed in challenging your mind and body with an ultramarathon!
WHAT’S IT LIKE TO RUN FOR 30, 50, OR 100 MILES? This book is a great inspiration not only to current ultrarunners, and to marathoners looking for the next challenge—but also to runners of all abilities, who will see that there is nothing you can’t do if you have the desire. What makes ultrarunners tick? What goes through their minds at mile 93? How can you train for such a colossal undertaking? These questions and many more are answered in this inspiring collection of 39 personal stories from ultramarathoners. Ultramarathoning is the logical next step for those who burn with a desire to explore their limits, and beyond. It is impossible to run ultra distances without coming away with at least one fascinating story. This book is full of them. There are stories of fatigue, blisters, nausea, and despair. But the ultrarunner prevails to find hope, love, healing, self-discovery, friendship, selflessness, and in the end, for most, triumph. Learn what it feels like to run an ultra from the champions, the newcomers, and the veterans of the sport. A few brief excerpts: “I left Edinburg witnessing my second sunrise on this run. Most ultrarunners dread dawn—the hours from 4:00 to 6:00 a.m.—primarily because this is when fatigue sets in.” —Keith Knipling “It would be hours before we’d see the first aid station, and probably close to two days before we’d have dry feet again!” —Deb Pero “I’m 95 miles into a 100-miler, it’s over 100 degrees out, my legs are shot, I’m a few scant minutes ahead of Ann and Gabriel, and my pacer is stopped dead in the trail for fear of a skunk?” —Tim Twietmeyer “Ultrarunning is without question the most feared aspect of adventure racing.” —Ian Adamson “The urge to quit right there was overwhelming, but I was still in the race. Perhaps a miracle would happen and I could get in under the four hours it would take to make the next cutoff. I thanked the aid station captain and plunged into the darkness.” —Will Brown “It was time to put all the viable excuses aside and look inside.” —Tracy Baldyga “I think I quit about 20 times during the race, mostly between the time the sun went down and the time that I finally walked away. Reality sets in when it gets dark. The trail gets lonely.” —Jason Hodde “During every race you are faced with a moment of truth, a point in the race when you either quit or persevere to the end. Every person who finishes an ultramarathon has accomplished a great feat, simply because they finished.” —Bethany Hunter
Ray Zahab was always the last to be picked for team games. Eventually, he quit trying and as he got older, he took up smoking and drinking. But after his grandfather and uncle died, and his father suffered a stroke, Ray realized he had to take charge of his life. Ray gave up his destructive habits and started looking for new challenges. When he read about the 160-km Yukon ultramarathon, he knew he had to give it a try. Everyone thought he was crazy. Ray had never even run in a regular marathon. One ultramarathon quickly led to another and Ray now combines his zeal for the race with a passion for fundraising.
Author: Tom Foreman
Publisher: Blue Rider Press
Release Date: 2015
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
CNN correspondent Tom Foreman's remarkable journey from half-hearted couch potato to ultra-marathon runner, with four half-marathons, three marathons, and 2,000 miles of training in between; a poignant and warm-hearted tale of parenting, overcoming the challenges of age, and quiet triumph. As a journalist whose career spans three decades, CNN correspondent Tom Foreman has reported from the heart of war zones, riots, and natural disasters. He has interviewed serial killers and been in the line of fire. But the most terrifying moment of his life didn't occur on the job--it occurred at home, when his 18-year old daughter asked, "How would you feel about running a marathon with me?" At the time, Foreman was approaching 51 years old, and his last marathon was almost 30 years behind him. The race was just sixteen weeks away, but Foreman reluctantly agreed. Training with his daughter, who had just started college, would be a great bonding experience, albeit a long and painful one. My Year of Running Dangerously is Foreman's journey through four half-marathons, three marathons, and one 55-mile race. What started as an innocent request from his daughter quickly turned into a rekindled passion for long-distance running--for the training, the camaraderie, the defeats, and the victories. Told with honesty and humor, Foreman's account captures the universal fears of aging and failure alongside the hard-won moments of triumph, tenacity, and going further than you ever thought possible.
'Lizzy never ceases to enthuse, inspire and amaze! She shows what it truly means to live life to the absolute fullest, step out of your comfort zone and to truly test your limits. So much more than a book about running, this memoir is about an enthralling life journey replete with peaks and troughs, highs and lows and many twists and turns. Most importantly, Lizzy reminds all of us to never stop exploring, discovering and challenging ourselves to do more than we think possible.' CHRISSIE WELLINGTON MBE, FOUR TIME IRONMAN WORLD CHAMPION Scared witless and surrounded by a sea of people, Lizzy Hawker stands in the church square at the centre of Chamonix on a late August evening, waiting for the start of the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc. The mountains towering over the pack of runners promise a grueling 8,600 metres of ascent and descent over 158 kilometres of challenging terrain that will test the feet, legs, heart and mind. These nervous moments before the race signal not just the beginning of nearly twenty-seven hours of effort that saw Lizzy finish as first woman, but the start of the career of one of Britain’s most successful endurance athletes. She went on to become the 100km Women’s World Champion, win the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc an unprecedented five times, hold the world record for 24 hours road running and become the first woman to stand on the overall winners’ podium at Spartathlon. An innate endurance and natural affinity with the mountains has led Lizzy to push herself to the absolute limits, including a staggering 320 kilometre run through the Himalayas, from Everest Base Camp to Kathmandu in Nepal. Lizzy’s remarkable spirit was recognised in 2013 when she was a National Geographic Adventurer of the Year. These ultimate challenges ask not just what the feet and legs can do, but question the inner thoughts and contemplations of a runner. Runner tells Lizzy’s story and in so doing, uncovers the journey of the physical, mental and emotional challenges that runners go through at the edge of human endurance. From the school girl running the streets of London to breaking records on the world’s mountains and toughest races, Lizzy Hawker is an inspiration to anyone who would like to see how far they can go, running or not.