Book Review: 26.2 Miles to Happiness

As I get older more people around me are taking up running. I’d like to understand that, when The Socially Distant Sports Bar podcast recommended Paul Tonkinson’s book on running a marathon I thought I’d give it a spin.

It’s autobiographical, covering his decision to push for a sub 3 hour marathon, as well as covering more biographical stuff. He covers the light and the dark of his life and how running has helped him.

I think I understand the mentality of a runner a little better now. Am I going to do a marathon? No. Paul’s (and others) descriptions of pushing through physical pain is not appealing.

He has a very good description of just how hard moderation is to achieve. That having hard lines on food, booze, staying out too late makes it way easier to make better choices because moderation leads to excess. Which I found funny as he’s clearly running to excess, although that’s not really as harmful as other practices.

It’s a breezy read but I was willing it to be quicker, maybe because I wanted to know if he reached his goal.