I just finished reading a new book, Run the World, by elite runner Becky Wade. After a successful collegiate running career, Becky embarks on a year long exploration around the world to learn about and embrace running cultures and traditions around the globe.
Over the course of one year, Becky visited 9 Countries, went through 11 pairs of running shoes, slept in 72 beds, and ran 3504 miles while experiencing different training styles and new recovery techniques.
Run the World Locations & Mileage
- England, 399 miles
- Greater England and Ireland, 283 miles
- Switzerland, 342 miles
- Ethiopia, 552 miles
- Australia and New Zealand, 1,058 miles
- Japan, 297 miles
- Sweden and Finland, 573 miles
This book encompassed several of my favorite things – running, travel, and food. What a wonderful and wild ride Becky was able to experience by traveling to these different locations, but also being taken in by locals and warmly welcomed into homes and the running community.
Not only does Becky run with locals on roads, paths, trails, mountains, and more; she stays in their homes, learns about their favorite foods and cooking methods, tests out different training styles and recovery techniques, and forms lasting relationships all around the world. She even gets to spend time with some running legends and icons, including Usain Bolt!
I love how this book is a great mix of travel (and I already had the travel bug after my 3 weeks in Europe), but also shows how wonderful the running community is. In each location Becky visited, she was able to connect with other runners who allowed her to join in their training groups and even compete with them in local races. Everyone was welcoming and eager to help out by providing a bed to sleep in, food to eat, companionship on training runs, and an inside look into their running culture.
Becky also shares a local recipe from each country she visited and talks about different food cultures, cooking methods, and eating rituals. Interestingly, she discloses that the Ethiopian diet consists of mostly carbohydrates, which as a dietitian and an American, who of course I have heard all about “carbs are bad” and low-carb diets, definitely puts a fresh perspective on how one food group cannot be blamed for a mass of health issues such as diabetes and obesity because Ethiopia does not have those same health issues.
Another thing I loved about this book was how she really got to spend long periods of time in each location so that she could explore the area, learn the trails, adjust to the training styles and get a good feel for each country. In Japan, she wrote about the public lockers that were around for active individuals to store their stuff while they enjoyed the parks and trails. I love that idea!
I highly recommend this book for anyone who loves running, travel, or reading. This book gave me even more motivation to get back into running and to find a race to begin training for. It also made me want to travel and experience for myself some of these amazing countries she visited.
I received a free copy of Run the World but otherwise was not compensated for this review and all opinions are my own. To pay it forward, I am now giving away my free copy of this book to one lucky reader because I truly believe you will enjoy it!