The Smarter Brain
Get Smarter. Think Better. Live Better.

Best Running Books

Looking for good running books to read? Below you’ll find a curated list of the best running books for inspiration, training motivation and proper running technique.

Whether you’re looking to read good running books in the park after a long run, want to motivate yourself for training or want to learn running techniques, and how to avoid injury, you’ll enjoy this list of best running books.

The 10 Best Running Books


1. Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen by Christopher McDougall

Print | Audiobook | eBook

Synopsis: Full of incredible characters, amazing athletic achievements, cutting-edge science, and, most of all, pure inspiration, Born to Run is an epic adventure that began with one simple question: Why does my foot hurt? In search of an answer, Christopher McDougall sets off to find a tribe of the world’s greatest distance runners and learn their secrets, and in the process shows us that everything we thought we knew about running is wrong.


2. What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami

Print | Audiobook | eBook

Synopsis: By turns funny and sobering, playful and philosophical, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running is rich and revelatory, both for fans of this masterful yet guardedly private writer and for the exploding population of athletes who find similar satisfaction in distance running.


3. Eat and Run: My Unlikely Journey to Ultramarathon Greatness by Scott Jurek

Print | Audiobook | eBook

Synopsis: In Eat and Run, Jurek opens up about his life and career as a champion athlete with a plant-based diet and inspires runners at every level.


4. Ultramarathon Man: Confessions of an All-Night Runner by Dean Karnazes

Print | Audiobook | eBook

Synopsis: In one of his most ambitious physical efforts to date, Dean Karnazes attempted to run 50 marathons, in 50 states, in 50 days to raise awareness of youth obesity and urge Americans of all fitness levels to “take that next step.””UltraMarathon Man: 50 Marathons – 50 States – 50 Days”, a Journeyfilm documentary, follows Dean’s incredible step-by-step journey across the country.


5. Once a Runner by John L. Parker Jr.

Print | Audiobook | eBook

Synopsis: Once a Runner captures the essence of what it means to be a competitive runner; to devote your entire existence to a single-minded pursuit of excellence.


6. Finding Ultra, Revised and Updated Edition: Rejecting Middle Age, Becoming One of the World’s Fittest Men, and Discovering Myself by Rich Roll

Print | Audiobook | eBook

Synopsis: Finding Ultra is an incredible but true account of achieving one of the most awe-inspiring midlife physical transformations ever.


7. Running with the Kenyans: Passion, Adventure, and the Secrets of the Fastest People on Earth by Adharanand Finn

Print | Audiobook | eBook

Synopsis: Whether running is your recreation, your religion, or just a spectator sport, Adharanand Finn’s incredible journey to the elite training camps of Kenya will captivate and inspire you. Part travelogue, part memoir, this mesmerizing quest to uncover the secrets of the world’s greatest runners—and put them to the test—combines practical advice, a fresh look at barefoot running, and hard-won spiritual insights.


8. The Terrible and Wonderful Reasons Why I Run Long Distances by Matthew Inman

PrinteBook

Synopsis: This is not just a book about running. It’s a book about cupcakes. It’s a book about suffering. It’s a book about gluttony, vanity, bliss, electrical storms, ranch dressing, and Godzilla. It’s a book about all the terrible and wonderful reasons we wake up each day and propel our bodies through rain, shine, heaven, and hell.


9. The Perfect Mile: Three Athletes, One Goal, and Less Than Four Minutes to Achieve It by Neal Bascomb

Print | Audiobook | eBook

Synopsis: Roger Bannister was a young English medical student who epitomized the ideal of the amateur — still driven not just by winning but by the nobility of the pursuit. John Landy was the privileged son of a genteel Australian family, who as a boy preferred butterfly collecting to running but who trained relentlessly in an almost spiritual attempt to shape his body to this singular task. Then there was Wes Santee, the swaggering American, a Kansas farm boy and natural athlete who believed he was just plain better than everybody else.


10. Daniels’ Running Formula by Jack Daniels

Print | eBook

Synopsis: Get in the best shape of your running career with the scientifically based training in Daniels’ Running Formula. In the book that Runner’s World magazine called “the best training book,” premier running coach Jack Daniels provides you with his proven VDOT formula to guide you through training at exactly the right intensity to become a faster, stronger runner.


Popular Reading Lists

Spark New Ideas. Think Better. Acheive Your Potential.

Start your 7-day free trial. (No credit card required)

Welcome! Check your email inbox.

Pin It on Pinterest