02 March 2011

Runnning Blue

Still crocked by plantar fasciitis - it's improving, with ice, rolling a massage thingie under my foot, and resting - I've had to find another way to get my running fix. A substitute for something that's already a substitute, perhaps ... My local (to the office) bookshop, the excellent Camden Lock Books, procured a copy of The Coolest Race on Earth (the coolest title ever for a book, too) by my new online friend John Hanc, which proved a pretty good second-best to going for a run. Unfortunately it leaves me with an irresistible urge to run the Antarctica Marathon (as my old friend Charles Stewart did a few years ago, immediately after his retirement), as well as to tick off the five continents on which I have not yet run a marathon and get to the magical 100 mark, all of them pretty unlikely when "rest" is the only running activity on the agenda.

I'd recommend John's book to all my running friends - which is most of my friends now - and probably a lot of non-running friends too. It's not just about running the Antarctica Marathon - the Last Race on Earth, as it was originally billed - but also provides a great deal of interesting background about the geography and history of the continent. And it's written in the wonderful, almost breathless, style that seems to me to be fairly typical of American authors of this sort of book - full of colourful similes, nice turns of phrase and cultural references - which I thoroughly enjoy. Being a teacher of writing as well as a practitioner, he knows what he's doing. Well worth getting hold of, even if it has to be imported from the US.

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