Published on March 2, 2016
50 Races to Run Before You Die
50 Races to Run Before You Die might seem like just the latest in a long line of bucket list books but there is much to distinguish it from most of those cut-n-paste must-do duds. For a start, in fact crucially, author Tobias Mews has actually run all 50 of his recommendations – we know that sounds like the least you could ask of an author, but (mentioning no names) you’d be surprised…
Anyway, cynicism safely stowed away, what else apart from author integrity do we like about 50 Races to Run Before You Die?
Mews, a former army captain, writes with clarity, detail and more than a dash of humour. The latter – to our mind – being the most crucial because an approach to this subject with anything short of good-natured banter would see the whole project disappear up its own MdS. Fortunately he knows his way round a keyboard and delivers some wonderfully self-effacing prose that give hope to us all in our quest to tackle something new.
So, which 50 races did Mews opt for? The short answer (and the one that doesn’t give the whole game away) is a rather charmingly mixed bag. There’s everything here from obvious entries like the London Marathon and UTMB to the quirky – The UK Wife Carrying Race – and beyond. There are some surprising omissions, such as Spartathlon, but presumably Mews has yet to tick that off his otherwise impressive list of running achievements.
To break things up a little more 50 Races to Run Before You Die divides everything into three categories: Good for Beginners, Sucker for Punishment and Hard as Nails. Each race includes key information to let you know what to expect, along with fastest times and, for the sake of transparency, Mews’s own finishing time. Saying that there’s something for everyone here sounds like a back-handed compliment, but there really is a great balance that will give readers the chance to tick things off or set about creating their very own wish-list. The large format, ample photography and scene-setting intro from James Cracknell all add to the book’s appeal.
50 Races to Run Before You Die (ISBN-10: 1781314446) by Tobias Mews is published by Aurum Press, RRP £16.99 – available from Amazon.co.uk
Until April 29 there’s the chance to win one of three copies of 50 Races to Run Before You Die in our latest competition here.
Main image courtesy of and (c) tobiasmews.com