Monday, April 29, 2013
Book Review "The Summit Seeker" by Vanessa Runs
While most books on running focus on the physical demands and rewards of running, Vanessa Runs new book "The Summit Seeker" delves into the psychological and spiritual side of trail and ultra running and how it has helped her overcome the many challenges in her life.
From her first 5K to her third 100 mile distance, Vanessa takes your along on her journey. On the way, you will encounter her struggles, adventures and triumphs, and see how running helped transform her life.
Early in the book Vanessa mentions a quote from her writer friend and race director Shelley Viggiano: "When you finish your first ultra, you are transformed from a weak person to a powerful one. There is nothing in life that feels insurmountable any longer, not once you've willingly wrestled with demons that big. When you know what you are capable of, you can take charge of your life. That's what running ultras did for me." This passage rang true for me. After running and completing ultras over the past few years I gained strength and confidence. I left my job, which I had held for many years. It was a good source of income, but I had not fully realized how miserable it was making me. Ultra running had given me the strength to see that I was not "trapped". I could make positive changes and survive. I am in a much better place today because of it.
The Summit Seeker is filled with great advice on life and running, and I found it thoroughly enjoyable to read. There are great stories of epic trail runs and the personal insights that come along with them.
If you are a fellow ultra and trail runner, there will be many moments in the book where you will find yourself smiling and nodding in agreement with the familiarity of the situation Vanessa describes. One of my favorite sections, entitled "On Time and Distance" sums up the ultra distance perfectly: "Running an ultra is like living an entire lifetime in the span of one day. You go through good times, bad times, happy times, sad times. It's truly a journey and every race changes you. It's an accomplishment that nobody can take away."
Folks who do not run ultras or trails will also be inspired by the many life lessons contained in "The Summit Seeker" as well!
So if you are looking for some inspirational running reading this spring or summer, I strongly recommend you pick up a copy of the "The Summit Seeker". Prop your feet up, grab a drink and settle in for a great read. Just make sure you get your run in first!
"The Summit Seeker" on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Summit-Seeker-Vanessa-Runs/dp/1482502933/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1367268218&sr=1-1&keywords=the+summit+seeker
Learn more about Vanessa Runs at: http://facebook.com/vanessaruns