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Trailhead: The Dirt on All Things Trail Running Paperback – April 9, 2015
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"Thorough, witty, and beautifully illustrated, this guide to our excellent sport will inform and entertain." - Trail Magazine
"With it's well-named title, Trailhead immediately acknowledges that every trail runner has to begin somewhere" ¦For newbies, Jhung offers valuable advice to get you on the trail fast and current trail addicts will find tips to make the trails even more fun and safe" ¦A great manual for new and seasoned trail runners." " €œ TriEdge
"Whether you're a seasoned off-roader or you've never run in the forest, you'll be tickled by Lisa Jhung's Trailhead. This pocket-sized book delivers everything you need to know about the art and science of running on trails." " €œ Women's Running magazine
"An easy-to-read pocket-book that addresses every topic imaginable" ¦lighthearted yet straightforward about key topics" ¦Trailhead is thorough yet entertaining resource with an abundance of practical advice." - Canadian Running magazine
"In Trailhead, Jhung explains how experienced trail runners can become fitter, faster, and more confident, while also showing how trail running is for anyone." " €œ Daily Camera
"Trailhead an essential read even for seasoned trail runners" ¦A cross between an easy-to-read pocket guide and a graphic novel, Lisa Jhung along with illustrator Charlie Layton have put together a fun, informative, and often hilarious guide [that] covers almost any and every thing that a beginning trail runner could possibly need to know." - Colorado Runner
"Lisa Jhung explains it all for trail runners new and old. No matter if you're a casual jogger, ultramarathoner, or somewhere in between, Trailhead will help you improve your game." " €œ Elevation Outdoors
"Trailhead is a quick and informative read, an invaluable resource for trail enthusiasts of all types, with 264 pages of witty advice and illustrations. This compact guide is chock full of great tips that can help beginners navigate the dirt, propel intermediates to the next level, and inspire avid trail runners to get into racing or go the distance." - RootsRated.com
"Athletes who are a bit leery of getting their feet dirty on the trails will feel a sense of relief and motivation after reading Lisa Jhung's Trailhead" ¦The book covers everything an aspiring trail runner would want to know. Readers will leave informed and laughing. Comical illustrations throughout keep the reading simple and humorous." - Triathlon Magazine Canada
"Whether you're an expert trail runner or a newbie, Lisa Jhung's book, Trailhead: The Dirt on All Things Trail Running has something for you. Jhung" ¦compressed her years of experience pounding the trails into a comprehensive and handy guidebook. Trailhead is full of advice about everything from running attire to differentiating between a bobcat and a mountain lion. Other topics include trail-running etiquette, DIY screw shoes for icy runs, and nutrition tips for before, during, and after your runs." - 5280 magazine
"You're going to dig Trailhead by Lisa Jhung. It's a fun and easy read" ¦packed full of useful tips, expert explanations, and illustrations that will have you laughing out loud." - Fit Bottomed Girls
"Trailhead is a must-have for anyone who is already running trails or for someone who is just getting into our off-road world." - Babbittville Radio
"Trailhead is a must-have for anyone from human mountain goat to neophyte. It is comprehensive, easy-to-understand, and often entertaining. Most of all, it's useful." - EndorphinRelease.com
"Trailhead is a book for newbies that want to know how to get started, and diehards that want to take their running to the next level. The format is fun and engaging, and the 5" ³x 7" ³ book actually looks like a trail guide. There are tons of illustrations and plenty of tongue-in-cheek humor." - SaltmarshRunning.com
Running journalist Lisa Jhung offers this witty beginner's guide to trail running for all runners who'd like to run off road.
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Top customer reviews
Know the difference between doubletrack and a greenway? You will. Jhung provides a comprehensive typology of trails in Chapter 3. What about the difference between trail shoes and road shoes? It’s not just the outsole. Turn to Chapter 4 for an in-depth analysis of the latest technical features incorporated in shoes made specifically for trail running. Or skip to Chapter 5 and learn how to gain traction in your old road shoes with a few strategically placed screws.
A resident of trail-running mecca, Boulder, CO, Jhung has been running trails for 25 years and is a contributing editor and columnist for Runner’s World. While her experience clearly shows in the scope of this project, it’s her sense of humor perhaps more than anything that will resonate with readers. Don’t be surprised if you find yourself laughing out loud as you survey the tools of self-care in Chapter 8 or learn the ten commandments of trail running etiquette in Chapter 9.
Regardless of skill level, readers will no doubt be inspired to hit the trails with confidence. Trailhead is engaging and provides just enough depth to be a good resource. Read it and rekindle your passion for running in the nearest city park or on a mountain adventure.
So I tell myself, when contemplating a run, that I should turn to any page in this book and see what it tells me. (I know, weird). Since I started doing this, I've increased my runs from 1-2 times per week to 3-4 times per week. And "my brain after a trail run" feels a lot like one of the author's illustrations of a happy brain (if there is such a thing?).
My ankles have always been creaky, but Jhung's advice on strengthening feet and ankles has me doing some of her recommended exercises when I'm sitting in my car or standing in line. My wife must know me well, because something about this book has gotten me off the couch and out into the fresh air. Makes for a happier marriage, methinks.
As a somewhat experienced trail runner, I found the content of this book to be almost a complete waste of money. Sketches designed to be funny were beyond that, to the point of being annoying, the humor was of the kind where the humorist failed by simply trying too hard.
About 75% of the information is either ridiculously firm-grasp-of-the-obvious:
(p 3), "What is a trail?" (really?)
(p 74), "Leave hats with bills or visors at home on a windy day--they are likely to blow off,"
and (p 144), "Cough, spit or gag to get the bug out of your mouth..." (if there is someone who does not know what to do when they get a bug in their mouth, they should not be trusted on the trails);
way beyond what the average trail runner needs to know (p 35) Shoes (p 43) Clothes, and the entire chapter Safety: Animals; or applicable to both trail and road running
(p 11) "Running trails improves bone density that may help combat osteoporosis.
And I disagree with her suggestion about (p 107) what to do when encountering dogs. First of all, "Dogs that are off leash should be well behaved and leave you alone..." is not always true, which makes me disagree with her suggestion to "Greet the dog and owner with a friendly hello." That is fine if the dog is leashed, but if it isn't, you may encounter an ownerless dog racing towards you. If a dog raced towards me without its owner on a trail, I yell, "No," firmly and repeatedly as I stop and wait for the owner to arrive. And I don't waste pleasantries on off-leash-dog owners (if I am on trails that require dogs to be leashed), I wait until the owner calls the dog, and continue on my way. I agree with her advice in the case of on-leash dogs, but then...there is little danger in such a situation.
That said, there was a little bit of helpful stuff, including the definition of (p 10) proprioception, (p 29) a couple of the suggestions for finding a trail, DIY: Screw Shoes (p 61) and the training techniques.
I could go on and on about what a waste of money this book is, but in the spirit of positivity, I will end with the best piece of advice she gives, which I totally agree with and love (p 171), "Jerkiness: Sometimes trail users, whether on foot, bike or motorized vehicle, act like jerks. Despite guidelines, these folks will assume that they get the right of way and what they are doing on the trail is more important than what you're doing. If you don't give them the right of way, they will take it anyway. Don't let it ruin your day; step aside and take secret pleasure in knowing you are not a jerk."
My advice, unless you are a friend of the author, skip this book (in which you'll likely find about 25% useful and 75% a waste of your time) in favor of any other running book you can imagine. I suggest: Shoe Dog by Phil Knight, Born to Run by Christopher McDougall or What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami. You are also going to want to watch The Barkley Marathons, it's brilliant.