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Lore of Running

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  1,556 ratings  ·  57 reviews
Lore of Running gives you incomparable detail on physiology, training, racing, injuries, world-class athletes, and races.

Author Tim Noakes blends the expertise of a physician and research scientist with the passion of a dedicated runner to answer the most pressing questions for those who are serious about the sport:

-How your body systems respond to training, the effects of
Paperback, Fourth Edition, 943 pages
Published December 3rd 2002 by Human Kinetics Publishers (first published July 16th 1987)
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Dec 26, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I found the 3rd edition to be thorough and excellent. The 4th edition refined a few points, expanded others, and toned down what might be considered controversial condemnation of fad diets.

This is my basic running reference which I refer to for any serious running question. Although I bought it almost a decade, I continue to pull it off the shelf to answer questions. It is just so much more complete than other running books.

"The marathon is less a physical event than a spiritual encounter. In
May 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book has an amazing amount of information - more probably than some will want. Medical information, running history, many current popular training methods, treating injuries, eating, drinking, and much more. If you only own one running book this probably should be it.

Highly recommended for the scientific runner.
Pete Danko
May 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Noakes is the fearless, relentless and indispensable expert on our sport. There is so much in this book. You'll go to it if you're exploring lengthening your tempo runs, or turning your focus to 5Ks, or wondering what mitochondria have to do with it all or feeling tenderness in your Achilles ... but you'll also go to it just because you love running and you want to read again about the training that brought Zatopek to that mind-bending 5000/10000/marathon triple-gold ridiculousness at Helsinki i ...more
Vernon Chaplin
Jan 08, 2008 rated it it was amazing
The bible of distance running. No one would ever read it straight through, but if you're serious about understanding your body and getting better, you should own it. Reads like a review of the academic literature at times, but also contains pages of engrossing stories and examples from the training of world class athletes.
Mr. Bartlett
Nov 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Haven't read the entire thing, but this is the most comprehensive book about running EVER! Great, scientific information.
Jesse Hackell
Sep 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Everything you could possibly want to know about running-and some pretty great stories, too.
Dec 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
I would have assumed the author of this book was arrogant due to the title had I not met him and if I hadn’t ever read the book. Insightful, honest and self-deprecating but if you tend towards neuroticism - read this only as a reference book - read as one would a normal book on running this becomes harrowing.
I have to say that I believe there is no book that comes even remotely close to this book as far as expounding on running research. Its large size is daunting at first. It's not for casual reading. But if you want to learn what scientists have discovered over the past century about running, this is excellent. The author is well respected (sits on editorial boards for well regarded academic journals, is long-time faculty at University of Cape Town, has an MD, has run marathons and ultramarathons, ...more
Feb 02, 2009 rated it really liked it
This book answered a lot of questions I had as a runner. Especially concerning food & fluid intake, training methods, and problems like injuries and overtraining. As an older runner I also found it informative that he carefully documented a gradual decline in running speed with age--there's no way around that so we might as well get used to it.

But I thought that Noakes is fixated on the elites, who arguably are "different" from recreational runners. He goes into incredible detail about every
Dec 19, 2009 rated it liked it
First off, I should qualify my poor rating of this book as not a reflection of the book itself, which is well written and researched, with superb advice, and some serious exercise physiology education. Tim Noakes is one of the true epic modern exercise physiologists today and one of the most prolific writers to boot!

The book overall is probably a great starting place for new SERIOUS runners. Folks who want to achieve their best, whatever that best might be, not for someone want to run for fun.
Aug 29, 2007 rated it really liked it
My fave for totally geeking out about running, which you would think (and you'd be right) is pretty dang simple. Noakes is just kind of kooky in an endearing way: Bernd Heinrich in a lab coat. But there's useful stuff in here, for sure.
Thomas Strömquist
Oct 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: All runners
Shelves: book-collection
The book for the serious runner. No matter level or goals, this is the reference work for everyone. Incredibly comprehensive and detailed.
Jun 08, 2008 rated it liked it
This book has WAY more information on running than most people would ever wanna know! I find it as a useful "encyclopedia" of sorts if I have a running question.
Mugizi Rwebangira
Aug 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
First a big warning: Don't try to read all the chapters in order, or to understand everything on the first go. Treat it more like an encyclopedia.

Some of my favorite chapters:

Chapter 3: Energy Systems
It was interesting learning how much energy is consumed running at different speeds and the physiology of how the body accesses energy stores.

Chapter 4: Temperature regulation
I often have to run in the hot and humid weather in the summer, so it was interesting learning the science of why this is so
Mar 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: did-not-finish
I have to admit that this is one of the very few books I did not finish.
This book is full of information, very well researched, and fat.... I managed to read about half of it when I realized that by the time I am done, some of the information will likely have become erroneous. It's the kind of book you can read a little bit at a time, but then, it can take you forever to finish it. So after 4 years, time to admit I'll never finish it.
I will choose the easier way and look on the web any specific
Andriy Bas
Jan 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: smartreading, sport
Many practical suggestions how to run properly.
Based on many-many researches, the author analyzed the best athletes in the world.
Recommended for every runner.
IMHO - the original version is too long, for non-professional athletes short version would be enough.
Aug 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Lots of info and data. Sometimes practical coaching gets lost in all the detail but a great resource on training. I needed to skim through some sections or my brain would have exploded.
Isaac Vanwestrienen
Dec 10, 2018 rated it liked it
Yikes. This book has a ton of graphs and stuff on training for marathons and other long races. It is very dull but if you are a runner you should read it.
Nelda Hazelhurst
May 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Aug 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2nd-time
En stor bok, også i overført betydning. Svært interessant og omfangsrikt innhold.

Allikevel får jeg etterhvert utover i kapitlene en gryende følelse av mr. Noakes rir sine kjepphester for langt. Uten at det nødvendigvis er gale opplysninger, så kan selv disse veldokumenterte påstandene bli tvilsomme.

Jeg kan trekke frem noen punkter som jeg mener at ikke alle "sider av saken" blir like godt belyst:

The Central Governor Theory (CGT) ) - uhyre interessant og nyttig apporach, men den er kanskje ikke
Dec 19, 2014 rated it liked it
This is a veritable encyclopedia of running and all things related to running: training, racing, injuries, illnesses, running history, nutrition; just everything under the sun. It is the most comprehensive running book perhaps in existence. The only thing is that it's old. It was first written in the 70s or 80s, I think? Last updated in the 1990's, which is still a pretty long time ago, and you can tell. It's definitely dated, but there is still some good stuff in here.

I read it in pieces (you h
Apr 20, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: in-english, sports
This book is clearly designed for competitive runners or trainers, but even if you are just running for fun and like to read scientific texts, you will find detailed answers on physiology, training, nutrition, injury prevention, history of running competitions...

If you are just looking for tips, maybe Lore of running isn't the right book to start with. I would recommend Daniels' Running Formula which has a scientific approach too (but in a less detailed way) and doesn't focus on competition only
Dec 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: running-books
The bible. Noakes has since gone off the deep end a bit with his low-carb evangelism, which is unfortunate because this book is truly a wonderful collection of running information. He has a section that basically collates all the different training schedules, from Pitzfiner to Daniels. That alone is worth a peruse. Personally, the section that was most helpful to me as a runner was the marathon section. When I was preparing for my first marathon, what struck me most was his pointing out that it ...more
May 12, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: running
Having read through several physiology text books filtering out topics of interest to a runner, I have found this book very helpful to answer questions that most runners would ask at some point or another. It is an excellent source of summarised research, however as I read it I can't help but think the author is also using the book as a platform to evangelise the "Central Governor" model. Still not a bad thing, just need to keep it in mind. It is still the best of its kind and a must for any ser ...more
May 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is my running bible. This books made so much sense from a personal point of view. Anatomy of a long distance runner vs a sprinter's anatomy. Also, how genes play a major role in our performance and how can we turn nature to our favor not against it. There is so much going on inside your body when you're running. Good explanation on physiology and body biochemistry. If you're a serious athlete, i highly suggest you pick up this book and start reading it today. Fascinating book!
Jan 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
The running bible. This monster of a book covers everything from muscle function to diets and even has a chapter dedicated to children and running. I had no idea Lore of Running provided such thorough coverage of the sport/hobby/profession. More of a reference book than a front to back reading, the topics in Lore of Running might make a rookie runner's head spin but it offers the nooks and crannies experienced runners will devour.
Glenn Pawl
Feb 18, 2010 rated it really liked it
The science can be pretty intense at times, but this book has it all. Very interesting to read the career summaries of many of the great names in running history. Also to find out that there are only so many fast marathons that the body can deliver, and how less is more is the key to longetivty in the sport.
Sep 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is a textbook. At 1,000 pages, it is very dense, I am only able to read about 3 pages at a time, using a highlighter and making notes. But FULL of information explaining how your muscles work, and respond to training- all the way down to to each individual fiber. Covers almost any question you could possibly have. Great book!
Feb 18, 2016 rated it liked it
I was given this book by a marathoner to learn more about running. It's a rather in depth book that is some times over my head. This is an outdated version as well but it does have some good information in it. Coaches and professional runners would probably get more out of this book.
Patrick Gardner
Mar 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
excellent review on physiology and a lot of myths and misconceptions I've heard from amateur athletes all my life. recommend for anyone interested in physical care or starting a sincere running regimen.
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Timothy David Noakes is a South African professor of exercise and sports science at the University of Cape Town. He has run more than 70 marathons and ultramarathons, and is the author of the running book Lore of Running.
“Your body will argue that there is no justifiable reason to continue. Your only recourse is to call on your spirit, which fortunately functions independently of logic.” 23 likes
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