Book Review: Tales from Another Mother Runner

March 4, 2015


Tales from Another Mother Runner
Dimity McDowell and Sarah Bowen Shea
242 Pages
Received a copy on Net Galley 

From the Publisher:
Every mother runner has a tale to tell. A story about how she realized, fifteen years after being told that she’s best being a bookworm, that there is an athlete inside her. Or the one about how she, fifty pounds overweight and depressed, finally found the courage—and time—to lace up her running shoes. Or maybe it’s about setting a seemingly impossible goal—going under two hours in the half-marathon—and then methodically running that goal down and tearing up across the finish line. Or it might be an account of friendship: she was new to town, was having a hard time making friends, was asked to join a group run, and now she’s got four BRFs (best running friends) who are her allies, her cheerleaders, her reality checks. Maybe it’s just a simple story of the beauty of starting the day off with an endorphin rush. Or, sadly, it could be about how, through the guidance of a thoughtful running friend, she found the space and rhythm to process being raped—and regained her strength and sense of self through every footstep.

In Mother Runners, elite runners Dimity McDowell and Sarah Bowen Shea share not only their own stories of personal triumph on the pavement but also the inspiring stories of many members of the vibrant mother runner community they’ve built on their popular site, Run Like a Mother. While the common theme is running, the variations that happen through the miles are as endless as the miles themselves: losing weight, gaining confidence, finding yourself, connecting with friends, expecting more, setting goals, dealing with disappointment, figuring out how to train efficiently, clearing your head, reconnecting with your memories, building a better you. Whether you’ve run more marathons than you can remember, or you’re just getting started, you’ll find the inspiration you need to get out there, keep pushing, and run like a mother.

The month after I started running I decided I would read some books about running, in hopes to keep me motivated and running.  The first running book I ever read was by these same ladies…Dimity McDowell and Sarah Bowen Shea, Run Like a Mother: How to Get Moving and Not Lose your Family, Job or Sanity.  I really enjoy their book and I loved that it included little quotes and stories from real moms…just like me.  

When I saw this new book was coming out I was pretty excited.  I sat down and read this book in one setting.  I could read it again.  I really enjoyed it.  I loved it actually.  I read a digital version, but I would love to buy a copy of this book and ad it to my library someday.  The book is a collection of stories, of quotes and ideas of real women and their love for running.  It’s not a book that will tell you how to run your next marathon, but it just might inspire you to sign up for one.  

I really loved how the stories and quotes are from “real” women. Maybe I shouldn’t say it like that, I just felt like a lot of thee women in this book are not professional athletes, they are like you and me.  Maybe I just like to tell myself that there is not a high percentage of women runners out there that are a sub 8 minute mile.  But in this book the stories are not all  about an 8 minutes mile, or even a 10 minute mile (or 12).  I really loved that part.  I read some running books and I just can’t relate because they are on such a different level then me.  I’m not really interested in becoming a super fast runner.  I just like setting distance goals. But I also have five kids, a husband, a family, a couple jobs.  Running is great.  I love it, but it has to work with me too. This book offers a good balance of running levels that I think any one can relate to. I was laughing out loud at some of the stories about “women problems” while running.  I also would like to vote a huge “YES” towards the idea at the end of the book that race’s should not only have age categories, but categories for women with 0-1 kids, 2-4 kids and 5+ kids.  That really made me laugh.

I think if you are a woman runner you would really enjoy reading this book. If you are even thinking about running or have run before but don’t run now, I think you might like this book. I’ve read 2 of the 3 books by these ladies.  I first put off reading the book on training, because when I started running I wasn’t really training for anything.  But now that I’ve got my first half marathon under my belt, and have a couple half marathons this summer I think I’ll add the training book to my must read list too.

Great book.  Highly recommend it.

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