A fun ramble for runners and non-runners alike. January 21, 2006
G. Cattarin “GMC” (Marlborough, MA USA)
Chris Russell’s writing is colorful, insightful, and just plain fun. This collection of his articles mixes all three strengths, and the result is an enjoyable ramble for runners and non-runners alike. There are great stories from running events – experiences which ring true with every typical runner who hopes to be more than a typical runner but knows it probably won’t happen. There are reflections and views on the world around us that ring true on multiple levels. And there are sections that simply leave you laughing out loud.
If you’re a runner, read The Mid-Packer’s Lament for the running stories, to reinforce your somewhat crazed self-image, and for some inspiration and advice along the way. If you’re not a runner – and especially if you’re a runner’s spouse or partner – read it as a sort of enjoyable therapy to help you understand why runners are like they are.
Easily Readable and a Good Laugh, September 13, 2006
The Mid-Packer’s Lament is a collection of the author’s personal running stories told in his words with his special wit and humor. The book is easily readable and can be picked up anytime, as each of the stories are only 2-3 pages. Much of the time I couldn’t contain myself and began laughing out load. As runner’s we all have our running stories and I found myself often putting myself in his shoes and enjoying the stories.
A Laugh A Mile, September 1, 2006
By Erich W. Manser (Middle of the Pack)
Let me just say, there were a few times I had to put the book down laughing. As a self-proclaimed mid-packer who took up running for weight-loss, now training for a first marathon, I was taken by how much of Chris’ content I found myself relating to, outside of just the running! His spot-on representation of that moment a runner realizes a difference in how they feel vs. how they look – Hilarious. I laughed myself red-faced (which is not as easy to do as it was 40lbs ago, heavier). Great read. Great Job, Chris. A perfect bedtime page-turner.
Easy read, fun … August 29, 2006
By Jonathan Wyner “M WORKS” (Cambridge, MA USA)
This is a collection of short stories from Chris Russell….a sort of best-of previsouly (mostly?) published columns from a true mid-pack runner with a cool house and a cool dog. At worst the stories are a little bit dull but they’re short so skip to the next one at best Russell’s humor reminds one of Mark Twain. One of the books on sports that actually smack of intelligence and thoughtfulness. A great vacation read or do one a night before bed…..Thanks Chris!
Readers Praise Chris Russell’s work…
About “Aliens at the Track”
You’re funny. I’ve enjoyed your columns. Thanks.
About “Take a ride on your Houston Hobby horse”
Liked your article!…
Carla Bass, Quito Ecuador
About “Boston 2004 – Miserable”
…Just wanted you to know that I very much enjoy your articles on Cool Running. I was just re-reading the Boston one. I think you do a great job of capturing the “serious but eternally mid-packer” runner’s race perspective!
John Intorcio, Merrimack Valley Striders – Massachusetts
Inspiring stuff Chris. … you describe perfectly the need to run. When the brain is tired & body is stiff from this artificial existence thrust on us by modern office life, there is nothing more nourishing for the soul than sneaking in such a run. Thanks for the article.
Hi Chris, I just read your article about the heat at the marathon, and I have to thank you for doing such a great job of expressing what it was like out there! My experience mirrored your own … Thanks for giving me hope and letting me know that my poor showing was no fluke!
I loved your article posted on Cool Running about Boston! This was my first Boston and my hoped-for 3:50 turned into a 4:30! And just like you, I can’t wait to be miserable again! I was reliving the experience as I read your story with a perverse excitement because I know how bad I felt, but running the grandaddy of all marathons even in the worst of weather conditions is just the coolest thing! Thanks for bringing back the memories so eloquently!
Loved the article. Ditto from this Canadian who wore warm tights at
the last long run (and was teased, ‘don’t you know it’s spring!’).
Jackie Windsor – Canada
Great article on cool running! It captured the day perfectly, especially the title. So true, Boston kicks my butt every year too and I keep going back as well.
All I have to say is you hit the nail on the head with just about everything in this article. That’s exactly how I felt too – from the starting off slow (people whizzing by in the first 10k – what were they thinking?), to stopping at 23 water stops on both sides of the road, to water in the shoes… I am coming back next year (after I re-qualify) angrier than ever! =)
I enjoyed reading this…I identified with every sentence. I agree that those spectators, homeowners, town residents, etc. should be nominated for sainthood and if I had a chance I would like to thank each one personally (since I was too delirious to do it the day of the race)
I liked the Boston article. I was out there suffering through it as well. What a tough day to run. It was my 4th time running Boston and I too enjoy the race.
About “Running with Buddy”
This is a great story! I also have a border collie (mix) who is now 2 years old, and what you described is definitely what you can expect in the years to come! … from one dog’s running buddy to another…
Thanks again for your story!
Danielle and “Sydney”
Great story. Just thought you might be interested, I have a 7 year old Border collie who runs the Somerville Road Runners weekly Khoury’s races with me. She even won a few weeks ago (no joke, check out the “Animal” division at the bottom of http://srr.org/events/khourys/mar11.html ). She also ran the 9 mile leg of the Mill Cities relay with me.
Good luck with your pup,
About “Busy as aBeaver”
I loved this article!
Can I ask where to find these beautiful trails you’ve described?
About “Dreading another Delightful Derry”
Great article. I survived my first Derry – I think I’m moving to Hawaii – this is just plain dumb.
About “Pub race comes of age”
Great article! As Co- Director OF “HANGOVER” it is nice to see good press. We have a newsletter to all members. Would like permission to use article.
Bottoms up. CHUG! CHUG! CHUG!
Bob Randall – Race Director of the ‘Hangover Classic’
This was EXACTLY what I needed to read today. I’ve been putting off workouts because we’re moving and time is scarce, and I feel progressively crappier with each one missed. Thanks for the reality check – if you can do it after a flight, I can do it after loading up boxes all day… off I go!
Inspiring stuff Chris. I am only after getting into running the last year or so but you describe perfectly the need to run. When the brain is tired & body is stiff from this artificial existence thrust on us by modern office life, there is nothing more nourishing for the soul than sneaking in such a run. Thanks for the article.
You’re funny. I’ve enjoyed your columns. Thanks.
Just started running, but your article had me laughing. You should have seen me at the Greek food festival on Friday night. You can have your pizza, I’ll take two gyro and some spanikopita. Oh, and don’t forget the baklava. How many miles will I have to log to get rid of that, I wonder?