Friday Finds – 9th December

Friday Finds is a regular feature in which I collate and share interesting articles and posts on running/health/fitness which I’ve read recently. Some might be inspiring, some might be scientific, some might provoke debate. All are things I’ve found in some way thought-provoking.

You’ve probably realised by now that I’m a big fan of running data. Despite somewhat questionable mathematical talent, give me some times, distances and running-related stats and I’m a happy Running Princess. So when I came across an article in a recent issue of Runner’s World about Ken Young, running’s Mr Big Data, I read with interest and was stunned to learn that so much of our data-based knowledge of running comes from his tireless work. It’s a fascinating story of one man’s passion and commitment and I recommend giving it a read.

One of the main pieces of data I’m interested right now is how much sleep I’m getting. It’s been a busy, stressful time at work and one thing I’ve learned is that I need to prioritise rest in order to protect my body from injury, but over the last couple of weeks I’ve been conscious that I’ve not been getting quite as much sleep as I would like. This piece from Athletics Weekly was therefore a timely reminder of why my body needs plenty of quality sleep in order to help me be a better runner.

Moving away from data, I often find at this time of year when the days get shorter and the weather gets colder, I’m more likely to have non-running friends commenting on my sanity in continuing to run when I could be sitting in my nice cosy house with a hot cup of tea and a cuddly cat on my lap. While that can be tempting, I know that running will always make me feel more energised and that cup of tea so much more enjoyable. But explaining that to a non-runner can be tough: why do I run? That’s exactly what Martin Fritz Huber, writing for Outside online, examined in the article below. Are his reasons the same as yours?

Many people run because it makes them feel good about themselves, it gives them confidence and boosts their self-esteem. With that in mind, I love this article from The New York Times about America Ferrera (always Ugly Betty to me!) taking on a triathlon and working to silence that negative voice inside her which said she couldn’t do it. We all have that inner critic, it’s what we do to silence it and fight back that’s important. America Ferrara explains how she managed just that.

And finally, if the dark nights have you longing to curl up with a good book of an evening, you might be in need of a bit of inspiration. Why not check out this list of 100 must-read books about running and see if anything takes your fancy? I know I’ll be adding a few to my wishlist now…

Happy reading,
The Running Princess

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