“Let Your Mind Run” by Deena Kastor

 A Review by Tara G

I think I may be hard to please when it comes to running books. With that said, I did walk away with two useful tidbits from “Let Your Mind Run.”

One, if you run downhill harder than your hardest you will improve your fast-twitch muscle fibers. This was of particular interest to me because I related to her discussing how it felt like her lungs and mind could go faster, but she couldn’t get her feet to turn over any more than they already were. Her coach gave her the advice of running downhill at 110%. I also have this problem and feel that it was really useful implementing this into my own running.

The second piece of advice was less practical, but more of an eye-opening thought about racing. She talks about how if you are pushing yourself hard enough, any race is difficult, whether that is a 5k, 10k, half, or full marathon. That resonated with me. I have started to feel very comfortable in a half marathon and after listening to her audiobook, it made me reconsider what that means.

I have to say that Deena Kastor has found what works for her as a runner. She set records, continues to challenge herself, and inspires others along the way, so I don’t want to be too negative about her. But, I think what inspires her, makes me roll my eyes. The focus on mindset, positive thinking, and her journey aren’t wrong, but they seem a bit cliche. It seems like those concepts are already pretty well accepted universally. Basically, the writing wasn’t anything to write home about, but her running is extraordinary.

If I am being honest, she lost me when she said her drink of choice is chilled white wine.

I think that this book is certainly worth reading for a runner who enjoys race recaps, but temper your expectations and you won’t be disappointed.

I give it 3 out of 5 stars.