When I agreed to run the half marathon with Beth, I decided I might want to educated myself on how to get ready, and not die in the process. Amazon is my friend, I use it a lot to find resources and books, so that’s where I began (plus I could research in my pj’s, which I’m sure would be frowned upon at Barnes & Noble). I knew I needed something for someone (namely me) who had not made running a part of their life before (fitness yes, running no)… I needed something for the complete beginner. “The Nonrunner’s Marathon Guide for Women” is one of the books that my search revealed. The customer reviews were high, and spoke about how funny the book was, so I decide to order it. I mean, come on… if your going to train for a half marathon, you might as well be able to laugh at something while doing it, right?? My book came in last week, and I’ve had a chance to read through it, and thought I’d share my opinions about it here.
Let’s start with what I liked:
1. I really enjoyed the books humor. The author, Dawn Dais, is outstanding and I found myself laughing out loud a lot. The book in peppered with journal entries she kept, while training for a full marathon, which are also hilarious.
2. She was very real about her experiences and what motivated her to run her marathon. She encouraged you to really look inside yourself and figure out WHY you wanted to run the race you chose, because that is what would really keep you motivated.
3. Did I mention the humor?
4. You always got the sense that she actually believed that anyone could do what she had done. That if you set your mind to it, nothing is impossible.
5. She was able to laugh at herself, and reminded you that keeping a good sense of humor through out the training process is half the battle.
6. It was very easy to relate to the author… I could really see myself in her and her experiences.
What the book didn’t do:
1. I would say this isn’t a “training manual”. It offers a running schedule, but from everything I’ve read there are better ways to go about preparing for a half/full/5k/10k. I would say the training aspect is not why you should get this book.
2. Sometimes her descriptions of the pain and trouble she experience (although done in a very funny way) scared me a little. I found myself thinking… “do I really want to do this??”. I’m glad that she made it through, despite the pain, but at times hindered rather than an encouraged.
Overall, I would HIGHLY recommend this book. It is so funny, along the lines of Erma Bombeck, and I will probably go back and re-read as my training goes on. It’s one of those books that just make you laugh. I would not, however make it my sole source of training information. I am reading a second book right now (The Absolute Beginners Guide) and will review that as well.
Encouragement factor: five stars
Training factor: three stars