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Run Gently Out There: Trials, trails, and tribulations of running ultramarathons Paperback – September 16, 2013
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About the Author
Widely unacclaimed as a writer, bearer of bad jokes, and possessing a poor memory for what went wrong last time, John Morelock is currently an almost retired whale spotter, mirage analyst, baker, wool gatherer, maintainer of trails, and nature lecturer. Morelock took up running on August 17, 1984 at 4:33 in the afternoon and completed his first ultramarathon in January of 1986. He has long since completed several more ultramarathons; most of them in the Pacific Northwest, but also in places as diverse as Texas, Colorado, Tennessee, and Arkansas. He established his trail running credentials early by successfully returning to the trailhead where he had left the car on many training runs in the Olympic and Cascade Mountains. Although largely unfocused as a racer, he managed a victory in each of his first two decades of running, one at the 100-kilometer distance and one at the more standard 34.5-mile venue. In 2002 he noted that his total running miles had reached 50,027. Having accomplished this feat without once kicking or tripping over a porcupine he reasoned that it was a good point at which to quit tracking such things and made no more log entries. Now, with time slipping by, philosophical meandering and trailside distractions have led to less racing and more running with pauses. He lives on Whidbey Island in Washington state enjoying the trails with his wife, Kathy, who took him on a different ultraventure in 2004; a 600ish mile pilgrimage across Spain during which he once helped the nuns in León, Spain bake the morning's bread--a wonderful day in León before continuing westerly on the way to Santiago.
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This book is very different.
Mr. Morelock opens up the soul of trail and ultra running. He exposes it's roots. It's hopes and dreams and fears. He demonstrates through several short stories and segments that this kind of running can't be taught, explained, or planned. It is something we learn through time on the trail. Through opening our hearts and minds. Through observation of our surroundings and processing the information we obtain about running, the environment and ourselves while we are out there.
If trail running had a diary, this would be it. Bravo Mr. Morelock. This is THE book that all trail and ultra runners need to read.
I love this book for giving me a glimpse into the world of people who are compelled to push their limits, There is a gentle openheartedness with which John shares himself, inspiring me not only to examine self imposed limits, but to open the heart and be gentle out there. Huzzah!