February 27, 2013

Running Book Review + Giveaway!

I recently had the opportunity to review The Ultimate Beginners Running Guide: The Key to Running Inspired by Ryan Robert.  (Check it out on amazon here--it's only $4.99 for a kindle edition.)  This book delivers exactly what its title promises--it lays out a step by step guide for beginner runners and covers topics like form, footwear, warm ups/cool downs, target heart rates, nutrition, and even confidence and motivation (it is, after all, a guide to running inspired!).

I really liked the way the chapters were broken up.  There is a ton of content in this book; it literally covers almost everything a new runner would need to know.  Robert does a nice job of breaking each content-packed chapter with headings, but what I most appreciated was the bulleted summary at the end of each chapter recapping the main points.  I don't know about you, but it drives me crazy when I'm trying to remember one particular tip or suggestion for a book and I have to skim the whole darn thing to find it.  These summaries would be really helpful for a beginner runner referring back to the text during training.

Robert includes several "visualization exercises" in the book.  Some people might think these things are kind of cheesy, but I think visualization can be a completely valid and important exercise for runners.  Since I'm not a new runner anymore, I don't really need to visualize myself putting on my running shoes and running down the block anymore, but I totally use visualization when I'm training for a big race.  The night before I'll try to visualize starting, running, and finishing the race before I go to sleep, and I really think it helps.  The visualization exercises in the book could be really helpful for someone who is JUST getting started with running.

Another really cool feature is that the book includes an appendix with training plans for literally every level of beginner runner, from complete couch potato to active beginner to 50+ runner.  Robert also lets you download these training plans in pdf form for free, which I thought was pretty cool.

Typically, I tend to prefer my running books to be part advice/tips and part memoir/narrative, ala The Courage to Start or The Non-Runner's Guide to the Marathon for Women, but this book really does a great job of giving a new runner nearly everything he or she needs to know to get started.  Definitely a quality book and at 115 pages, it was a quick read.

Now for the giveaway.  Ryan Robert has graciously offered to give away digital copies of The Ultimate Beginner's Guide: The Key to Running Inspired to 3 Juice Boxes + Crayolas readers!  Are you a tired teacher needing a little pep in your step?  A brand new runner looking for tips?  Or a seasoned runner who needs to work on form and nutrition? (cough, me, cough...)  See how to enter below...

Leave a separate comment for each entry...

  • Be a Juice Boxes + Crayolas follower, and leave me a comment letting me know! (Mandatory)
  • Leave me a comment letting me know why you want to win this book, whether it's for you or to share with a new runner in your life who needs it! (+1 additional entry)
  • Share this giveaway on your blog, FB, or twitter and leave a comment letting me know (+1 entry each)
That's it!  Easy peasy lemon squeezy as we say in my 3rd/4th classroom. :)  This giveaway will close at midnight on Saturday, March 2nd, and I will choose a winner the following day using random.org.  (Seriously, how is it almost MARCH already??)  

Disclaimer: I was provided a digital copy of this book by the author for the purpose of writing this review.  I was not compensated in any other way, and all opinions expressed are my own. :)


  1. Very simple and yet offers a lot of information for all levels..

    The Equation book

  2. I am a follower of your blog.

  3. I have been on a recent streak of reading lots of running books. I have ran pretty much all my life but I love reading about different ways to approach running and this would be a great book to read.

  4. I have been a follower of your blog for a while! I Love it :)

  5. I would love to provide my newbie runner friends with this book!

  6. I have also added this to my twitter page :)


  7. I would love this book as I want to get into running!

  8. I follow your blog! I'm glad you're back!

  9. I would love to have this book! I'm trying to become a runner, but I don't really know how to start.

  10. Just found your blog! I'm also a teacher and a runner.


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