Read These Running Memoirs to Start 2024

If you're looking for a perfect recovery activity, look no further than these running reads

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Whether you’re a runner, a bookworm, or a running bookworm, 2023 was certainly a year where running literature hit its stride. With the new year just around the corner, we thought we would compile a list of a few of our favorite running reads of 2023. 

From tales of triumph to expert advice, these books might just be your new favorite running partner. So, let’s lace up our shoes and run into the world of the best running books of 2023.

Read These Running Memoirs to Start 2024 1

The Longest Race: Inside the Secret World of Abuse, Doping, and Deception on Nike’s Elite Running Team

By Kara Goucher, with Mary Pilon

In her riveting memoir, Olympic runner Kara Goucher shares her journey from aspiring athlete to joining Nike’s elite Oregon Project in 2004, coached by the now disgraced Alberto Salazar

From her early days harboring Olympic dreams to being offered a Nike sponsorship upon graduating college, Kara’s journey took a turn in 2004 when she joined the Nike Oregon Project, a secretive and generously funded team led by then renowned coach Alberto Salazar.

What initially seemed like the opportunity of a lifetime, with victories at World Championships, Olympic appearances, and podium finishes at marathons, concealed a dark underbelly.

Behind the scenes, Salazar was pushing the boundaries of anti-doping rules and fostering a culture of abuse, a revelation Goucher courageously exposes in her book.

The Longest Race unfolds with stunning honesty, portraying Goucher’s transformation into a crusader for female athletes.

She becomes a pivotal figure in the effort to have Salazar banned from coaching at the Olympic level. Goucher’s memoir is not just a personal narrative—it’s a rallying cry for change.

Read These Running Memoirs to Start 2024 2

Choosing To Run: A Memoir

By Des Linden, with Bonnie D. Ford

Choosing to Run is an inspiring memoir by Olympian Des Linden, capturing her historic 2018 Boston Marathon win amidst challenging weather and personal doubt. 

From her early triumphs to becoming an Olympian, Linden’s tenacity has defined her unconventional journey in professional running.

The book delves into Linden’s unique training approach, her mindset, and her relationships with other elite runners. It explores her deep connection to the Boston Marathon, diverse Olympic experiences, and groundbreaking achievements, including a world record at 50 kilometers.

More than a chronicle of victories and records, Choosing to Run offers a glimpse into Linden’s core values, emphasizing the significance of family, friendships, and the enduring passion that propels her to embrace the challenge of running each day.

This memoir is not just a celebration of athletic achievements but a testament to resilience, determination, and the unwavering commitment that defines Linden’s extraordinary running career.

Read These Running Memoirs to Start 2024 3

Good For A Girl: A Woman Running In A Man’s World

By Lauren Fleshman

Fueled by her elite running background and advocacy for women in sports, Lauren Fleshman shares her inspiring journey and calls for reform in a sports landscape failing young female athletes.

From her decorated collegiate and professional running career to becoming a key figure in women’s running with Nike and later revolutionizing the industry with Oiselle, Fleshman is now coaching elite young female runners.

She highlights how sports systems, initially designed for men, consistently let down young women, with alarming dropout rates and health struggles among female athletes.

Good for a Girl blends memoir and manifesto, chronicling Fleshman’s love for running, facing challenges, and fighting for a better future for female athletes.

It challenges the outdated notion of women feeling fortunate just to participate in sports, advocating for a reconstruction of competitive sports systems to center around women.

This heartfelt and energetic narrative serves as a joyful ode to the running life, a personal journey of growth, and a vital plea to reimagine sports for the benefit of young women.

Read These Running Memoirs to Start 2024 4

Far Beyond Gold: Running From Fear To Faith

By Sydney Mclaughlin-Levrone

Sydney McLaughlin is set to release her book Far Beyond Gold in January 2024, but we’re going to roll it into this list. 

McLaughlin’s book shares her struggles, victories, faith, and the transformation she’s experienced through winning world championship and Olympic medals. 

It is certain to be an inspiring story that we look forward to sitting down to in the new year. 

Photo of author
Jessy has been active her whole life, competing in cross-country, track running, and soccer throughout her undergrad. She pivoted to road cycling after completing her Bachelor of Kinesiology with Nutrition from Acadia University. Jessy is currently a professional road cyclist living and training in Spain.

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