You can check out Dimity and Sarah's blog at: http://runlikeamotherbook.com/
This book has 26 chapters with an additional .2 commentary at the end of each chapter -- for those of you non-runners that resembles the brutal 26.2 miles in a marathon journey. And what a journey this book was ......
Honestly, I haven't read a book since high school (other than What to Expect When You're Expecting .... and more recently, Fancy Nancy or Goodnight Moon!). But, I was really excited to read through Run Like a Mother and see how I related to other running mothers and bond through their experiences by each turn of the page. Between balancing work, family and running, I don't really sit down until 9:30 or 10:00 at night and that is usually to veg out in front of the the tv and I usually zonk-out and drift off into dreamland. Reading a book isn't usually on my agenda. But, this one was TOTALLY for me! It felt like it was a little indulgence every time I opened it back up. This book kept me interested and I was able to sneak in mini reading sessions at bedtime (I enjoyed it so much that I didn't fall asleep like I do with the tv!), at my daughter's dance lessons, waiting for doctor's appointments, and in the restroom (which I was ironically doing one evening when Little Dude came knocking on the bathroom door, while reading about one of them talking about having little bathroom companions themselves!). This book surpassed my expectations. I turned each page with excitement, giggles and smirks on my face. I can't even count they number of times I laughed out loud. There were so many pages flagged in my copy when I was finished! When I closed the book after reading the last page ... I honestly felt like I've accomplished something (reading a book is a HUGE deal for me!!), not as much as completing a marathon, but close!
I'm going to review this as a runner .... and then a mother ....
The runner in me
The very first chapter pulled me in, as Dimity described trying to set her alarm early for a run before her family got out of bed. How she would set her running clothes out in the bathroom and would eventually drag herself in there to pull her clothes on, because she knew that the run would make her feel better. There have been far too many times I have been psyched at bedtime to set the alarm early, only to turn the alarm off when it goes off at 4:45 AM. Then my pre-sorted/pre-matched running outfit sits there until the morning's chores (or work) are done for the day.
It was until page 70 of this book that I thought I was the only strange duck out on the road counting my steps or backwards from 100 in sets of four to reach the next mile marker. Anything to get me in a rhythm, help me concentrate on my breathing or just get me through the next mile. Dimity made me laugh as she did similar counting in her head and broke training runs out into precalculated time segments, just to break up the monotony.
The mother in me
Parts of this book also made me realize that I really can do anything. Having given birth to two children without an epidural and the second one totally drug-free, I've thought to myself while I'm struggling on a run ... I gave birth two these two beautiful children ... I did it and nobody else ... I can do this, too; no one else can finish this run for me.
Sections of the book also reminded me of how far I've come since the birth of my second child. I gained close to 50 lbs with the second pregnancy and when I started back to running too early and too hard, I got shin splints and got major chaffing on my chubby inner thighs and had to run in unflattering spandex for quite some time. My legs were raw and bloody as I pushed through the pain of the cellulite-filled thighs rubbing against each other with each stride. Similar stories were touched on in this book. It made me feel like I wasn't crazy!?!?
I loved the quote from a mother who set her half-marathon PR when her husband and infant were spectating the race and she forgot the baby's bottle at home. She ran fast just to keep her son from getting hungry!
One of the sections that had me in tears was one of the ".2" sections: This is my brain on a run. Dimity divided up her thoughts into pie charts, most of which I could relate to, but had me laughing in tears. Some of my favorites: Counting the weeks since you've had sex with your significant other; Imagining how I would feel if I found out I was pregnant again; Contemplating whether I'd want a girl/boy; There's no chance -- it's been too long since we got busy; Calculating how much time is left in my run; Counting my steps ....
If you are a mother of two, are an expectant mother, or don't even have kids on the brain ... and are a runner ... YOU NEED TO READ THIS!!! You will relate to this book in so many ways. The book has made me feel that my love of running, and multi-tasking, and trying to jam fifty-million things into my day to make myself feel better ..... is normal. Start shopping here.
There is even a Run Like a Mother Book Tour. Check out the listing here. I'm seriously considering driving to Milwaukee on June 7th if anyone is interested in attending.
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