Best Reads on the Art and Science of Exercise Physiology, Running Mechanics, Footwear, Injury Prevention, and Training for Runners of All Ages and Abilities

Mark Cucuzzella MD, Professor Family Medicine West Virginia University

Books

1. Anatomy for Runners: Unlocking Your Athletic Potential for Health, Speed, and Injury Prevention by Jay Dicharry MS P
·THE toolkit for runners, coaches, and medical providers treating them. Learn how your body works and how to reset it for better health. Jay has worked integrally on the USAF Efficient Running project.

2. Tread Lightly: Form, Footwear, and the Quest for Injury-Free Running by Dr. Pete Larson and Bill Katovsky.

· An entry into the science of running and running shoes. Dr. Larson provides the science behind many of our principles of healthier running. A must for anyone trying to understand running form and the effects of footwear.

3-4. Big Book of Endurance Training and Racing and The Big Book of Health and Fitness by Dr. Phil Maffetone.

· 2 must reads to understand basic aerobic vs. anaerobic activity and ADS (aerobic deficiency syndrome). Maffetone trained Mark Allen, Mike Pigg, and Stu Mittleman….all legends. Principles are great for entry level and high level runners. Large focus on diet. Be healthy, not just fit.

5. Healthy Intelligent Training by Keith Livingston

· Time tested Lydiard Method outlined in easy insightful reading. The lessons and methods of “The Coach of Champions” who helped bring “Jogging” to America

6. Running Science by Dr. Owen Anderson

· 40 years of exercise science and experience. Great tips on running form, aerobic development, and drills.

7. Science of Running by Steve Magness

· Learn the secrets from the coaching mentor to Galan Rupp and Mo Farah prior to London 2012

8. The First 20 Minutes by Gretchen Reynolds

· New York Times premier fitness columnist gives you the information on how just a little moderate activity daily will keep you well.

9-12. Challenging Beliefs, The Real Meal Revolution , Waterlogged, and the Lore of Running by Tim Noakes

· The world’s leader in Exercise Science challenges much of conventional wisdom on topics of nutrition, hydration, and endurance performance.  these are all truly epic works.  Just throw away the chapter on nutrition in the Lore of Running (Tim’s advice)

13-14. Explosive Running and 1×20 RPM Strength Training Program Dr. Michael Yessis

· 2nd Edition Explosive Running explains how to run fast and efficient

– 1x20RPM makes strength training simple , clear, accessible, and understandable

15. Fat Chance: Beating the Odds Against Sugar, Processed Food, Obesity, and Disease by Robert Lustig

· A must read for anyone who wants to understand the science of food and obesity. Required reading for my medical students.  ***Fat Chance Cookbook now Available

16-17. Why We Get Fat and What to do About It and Good Calories , Bad Calories by Gary Taubs

· An eye-opening, myth-shattering examination of what makes us fat, from acclaimed science writer Gary Taubes.

18-19. In Defense of Food and Food Rules by Michael Pollan

· Pollan’s eloquent manifesto and follow on handbook show us how we can start making thoughtful food choices that will enrich our lives, enlarge our sense of what it means to be healthy, and bring pleasure back to eating.

20. Injury Free Running and Human Locomotion by Thomas Michaud

· Epic reads for anyone treating runners in health care setting

21. Aerobics by Dr Ken Cooper (1968)

· Groundbreaking short book on the science of aerobic health. Just as relevant today as it was in 1968

22. Jogging by Bill Bowerman (1967)

· Arthur Lydiard’s influence on Bill Bowerman brought Jogging to America and soon thousands were running for fun and health. Amazingly insightful book. Go forward by looking back.

23. Serious Runners Handbook by Tom Osler (1976)

· Common sense book on healthy running still relevant today. A fun short read.

24.  The Story of the Human Body: Evolution, Health, and Disease by Dr Daniel Lieberman

– My friend and fellow barefoot runner gives the scientific and evolutionary view into why we stay well or become ill. Dan is the true genius in the field.

25. 8 Steps to a Pain Free Back by Esther Gokhale

· Relearn how to sit, stand, and walk in how we designed

26. On Getting Fit and Feeling Great (actually 3 books in one How to Feel Great 24 Hours a Day, Running and Being, and This Running Life) by Dr George Sheehan

· Dr. Sheehan is the original doc/runner/philosopher/exercise authority.

27. Long Distance: Testing the Limits of Body and Spirit in a Year of Living Strenuously by Bill Mckibbon

· Great read on exercise physiology principles

28. Why We Run: A Natural History by Bernd Heinrich

· Really interesting for the anthropologist in us all. Why do birds fly for miles on little food….hmmmm aerobic (red meat)…fat burning. Highly efficient and tasty. 27. Younger Next Year: Live Strong, Fit, and Sexy Until You’re 80 and Beyond by Crowley and Lodge

· Read this for putting all the principles of healthy living and living longer in non rocket science dialogue

29. On the Wings of Mercury by Lorraine Moller

· Inspiring read from friend, Boston Marathon champ, and Olympic Bronze Medalist. Lorraine is leader of youth fun running movement.

30. Born to Run by Christopher McDougal

· New York Times Best Seller tells the tale of injured runner discovering the running secrets of the legendary Tarahumara Indians of Mexico.

31. Spark: The Revolutionary New Science of Exercise and the Brain by John Ratey

· A groundbreaking and fascinating investigation into the transformative effects of exercise on the brain

32. Play: How it Shapes the Brain, Opens the Imagination, and Invigorates the Soul by Stuart Brown

· a groundbreaking book on the science of play, and its essential role in fueling our happiness and intelligence throughout our lives

33. Fit Soul Fit Body Brandt Segunda and Mark Allen

· 6 time Ironman Winner reflects on the essentials of sustainable activity and health. Discover the mind, body, and soul connection.