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Couch to 5K
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Reading not running

Over 5 weeks since I hurt my knee and still not running. Yesterday I walked for about 2 miles and pottered around a shopping centre. Knee was really sore by the end of the day. I have been cycling a bit. Did 4 miles on Saturday and five and a half on Monday. Not the same though, I keep looking enviously at runners out on the street.

Anyway enough moaning.

While I have been couch bound I have been reading about running instead. I have found it very interesting. I have read 'What I talk about when I talk about running' and 'Born to run'. I have also dipped into Chi Running.

Fingalo suggested the runners handbook which I have bought but it looks quite technical and has small print so I haven't started that yet! Sorry Fingalo.

I have found the first two books both interesting and inspiring. They are full of stories and anecdotes which I found easy to read, funny in parts and touching in others.

Chi Running is more of a style of running, focussing on using the body in a natural way and avoiding injury. (Any guesses why I picked that up!)

Having read these and their comments on running shoes I have become quite interested in barefoot running or at least not paying out for expensive running shoes. According to what they are saying these shoes mollycoddle our feet and actually make it more likely for us to be injured! This is an idea put forward by some coaches and athletes especially in ultra running. They also say that old trainers or pumps could be better for us. Obviously I'm not advocating that everyone throws their running shoes away but it has made me stop and think a bit. Would be interested in your views.

Hope everyone is enjoying their running and that I'll be back out there with you soon.

Viki :-)

6 Replies

Hi Viki. I can feel your frustration, hopefully you'll be back out there soon.

No worries re the book, it sits on my desk and is more of a manual to dip in and out of then a rollocking good read, it does serve a purpose though.

I read What I Talk About last week and enjoyed it and am on Born To Run this week, having only ordered Chi Running this morning. I also have Feet In The Clouds ready to go.


I'll try Feet in the Clouds next then.


Hope the knee gets better soon - sounds really frustrating.

I nearly bought What I Talk About, but resisted it. I can see now that I will end up buying it! tempted by Feet in the Clouds too - I'll wait for the review, Fingalo!

I have been totally convinced by the running style arguments, and now tend to run in my flat work shoes, which have a thin sole and plenty of toe room, and they are really comfortable. In my car I have a pair of super-cheap pumps/plimsolls, that I bought in case I ever forgot to take trainers to school. I think I need to try out running in them, simply out of curiosity!

If you've still got reading time available, have you tried reading Gordon Pirie's online-published (and free) 'Running Fast and Injury Free'? scribd.com/doc/13695/Gordon...

He was a world-class English long distance runner who didn't get to be as well-known as perhaps he should (didn't fit into the university-type mould of the world-class runners of his time, plus other issues). He clearly had a chip on his shoulder (unsurprisingly) and he goes on a bit perhaps, but it's an interesting read, and he says much the same as Christopher Macdougall in Born to Run. I really enjoyed it, and it made me see running in a different light.


Just found Desert Island Discs from 1963, with Gordon Pirie. Really strange listening to him talking - he comes over as a quite different character from the book! (His main distances were 5k and 10k incidentally. It's rather sad he's so little known.)

One of his jobs post-running-career was getting businessmen to exercise to get fit 'it's quite a problem nowadays' - c25k 1960s style! Running round Richmond Park for 3 hours - 'girls as well manage to do it'.



Thanks. Sounds interesting. I'll take a look.


Hi vikicats, I feel your pain - I'm not running at the moment either due to shin splints and am awaiting physio :-( was only 2 weeks away from finishing C25K aswell! I was interested to read that some people think buying proper running shoes can make you more likely to get injured, my problems started only when I went running in my new shoes! Hope your knee gets better soon anyway, might have a look at Born To Run, it sounds good! x


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