Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Book Reivew: A Cold Clear Day


     I recently finished reading A Cold Clear Day: The Athletic Biography of Buddy Edelen by Frank Murphy. Over the years I've bought and read quite a few running books. I find myself on Amazon looking for running books with interesting stories.  After you have read quite a few, "I overcame this great challenge through running" or a book that is really just one long race report, they do get kind of boring.  But, you should read a few of them anyway. 
     This book talks about the running career of Buddy Edelen starting in the early 1960's through 1965.  Back then as the book relates, American runners basically sucked and could not compete on the international stage in the marathon distance.  Buddy moved to England in 1960, to teach and train.  He started kicking everyone's tail and setting some American records.  In the 1964 US Olympic marathon trials he beat the second place runner by 3.5 miles.  Unfortunately he developed a problem with his sciatic nerve which cut his running career short. 
      What I really enjoyed about this book was it contained quite a bit of his training log.  You could see just how much training this guy actually did.  How many repeats on the track, how many miles a week, what pace.  Also, this guy was doing this kind of work load before the running shoe boom/marketing and also sports drinks, and various "energy" stuff that you'll see ads for in running magazines.  There are one or two pictures and you can get a good sense of the running form he had.  You can see a bit of the correspondence between him and his coach, back in the snail mail days. Additionally, it was well written and you can get through it pretty fast.
     I give this book a 4 of 5 stars.  It doesn't drag you down, it flows well, lots of good information to glean, and  it's a great historical perspective of what was going on in running in the early 1960's.  Give it a read or pick up another and let us know about it on the Facebook page. 


  1. I listen to audiobooks as I exercise (if I'm by myself which is the norm).

    There's a great book called Spark which explains the connection between exercise and a host of physical and, more importantly for many, *mental* improvements. Check it out if you have the time.

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


  2. Okay cool. I'll check it out!