Add “author” to the impressive list of titles held by Des Linden, arguably one of America’s best female long-distance runners. The Boston Marathon champion and two-time Olympian’s fist memoir, “Choosing to Run,” hits book store shelves (and online sites as well, of course) on April 4 and it tells the story of her running life — with inspiring lessons that will appeal to runners and non-runners.
• Her training and how she gets ready mentally for the hardest races (including her 2018 Boston win amid the worst weather on record). How can we all pump ourselves up for the hard things?
• Why she started to run and the pressure she faced as an oddball athlete. Childhood pressure can follow us through our lives regardless of activities, in the end it’s about focusing on what makes you happy and how you can lift yourself up.
• Contract negotiations, sponsor issues, and standing up for herself even when it was tricky. Being a woman in a man’s world, pushing back on negotiations and training plans wasn’t always easy.
• Avoiding the doping scandals that sidelined many of her peers by competing the right way.
“I am incredibly proud of the words that made it on the pages,” Linden tells Running Insight. “My career is the product of so many choices — it was rewarding revisiting them, where they led me and the lessons I learned along the way.
“I’m thrilled I get to share this with the world and I hope that a nugget or two will help, inspire and/or educate a reader’s own journey,” she adds.
In “Choosing to Run” Linden also invites readers behind the scenes as she explores what makes her get up and run every day. She takes readers mile-by-mile through the brutal, exhilarating day that she won Boston in 2018 and she explores how she started out in the sport and what led her to long-distance running; her relationships with other running greats such as Shalane Flanagan and Kara Goucher; how she learned to advocate for herself in business and training; and why the Boston Marathon has always meant so much to her.
Des is aiming to win Boston again in 2023, so all eyes will be on her come April. And the book is already getting rave early reads from the likes of Angela Duckworth and Ben Gibbard:
“This is a gripping story of grit and grace. With unusual honesty and rare insight…I loved every page and the morning I finished, I laced up my sneakers and went out the door inspired to do my best!” — Angela Duckworth, New York Times bestselling author of Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance
“Des boldly pulls no punches in this behind-the-curtain account…If you’ve ever watched a marathon and wondered what was going on in the mind of that person who just blew by at 5:15 pace, here’s your chance.” — Ben Gibbard, ultra-marathoner and lead singer and guitarist of Death Cab for Cutie
“The most entertaining sports book I’ve ever read.” — Deena Kastor, New York Times best-selling author of “Let Your Mind Run: A Memoir of Thinking My Way to Victory”