The Running Dutchman is here

Summer is here and my first English book has come out. I have translated, updated and improved De rennende Hollander (2010). It is now The Running Dutchman. You can find it here on Amazon, available as an e-book. This weekend it will be free to download.

Thanks, and a happy summer to all!



A radio talent is born?

Honed my Dutch radio skills today at Ruud de Wiltd’s cool radio show. They set up a studio in midtown Manhattan, and I was a guest during their last hour live from New York City. Nice to chat about running and my book.

It was a slightly melancholic affair, watching the runners in Brooklyn and Central Park. But it was also fun, a gorgeous day in the city. I am determined to be back. When that happens, I plan to follow Toby Tanser, who ran an incredible race yesterday. This, kids, is how you do it: no mile was ever more than 1 second faster or slower than the previous one. Like clockwork… And that, among other things, is why I am happy to call Toby my coach.

He’ll go sub-3

In my book, which my good friend Eddie cannot read, I talk about the excellent competition I have with him. We have run countless miles together since we met at speedwork in Central Park in 2009. Having a like-minded runner to push me and to push, to challenge and be challenged by, made me better, faster and more determined. It also made him run a sub 3:10, finally. You’re welcome.

When he was still faster...

Who is faster? Depends on who you ask. I’ll let our marathon PRs speak for themselves. (Eddie, the comment section is yours.) But I am worried. My 3:03 in Amsterdam stands, but I wonder for how long.

When I saw Eddie and our speedy friend Gordon last week, Eddie looked sharp. Eager and ready, well-trained and injury-free. I think he’ll go well under 3 next week at the ING New York City Marathon.

I hope he will. The haiku he wrote in 2010 (Finished ahead of / Diederik van Hoogstraten / 26.2 miles) needs to be true once again. And if it will, I will be pushed upon my return to running to give meaning what I wrote in my book: ‘My poetic running friend has only underlined the goal at the top of my wish list: beating him at the 42 195 meters.’

Good tapering to all my friends. And here’s my new Dutch column.

P.S. My motorcycle is for sale. Anyone?

New column, great running website

Although I am still not running during this summer of my discontent, I did write a new running column about the ongoing debate: minimalism vs traditional, more supportive shoe. I link to an interesting interview with the expert (and barefoot runner) Daniel Lieberman. Nice title: ‘Born, and Evolved, to Run.’

Editor Rob Pauel is doing a great job with ProRun, the website that runs my fortnightly columns. It’s a helpful, interesting platform for runners of all levels and ages in Holland and Belgium. Great deals on shoes and gear, as well. Check it out some time.

Happy running to all, and good luck in the Bronx to those of my running friends who will try to beat Irene. You’re crazy. A good crazy.

(Here’s me running on a pretty bad rainy day with running legend Chris. It can be done.)

Book promo from Nijmegen

My parents are my best promoters, giving every friend and relative and neighbor in Nijmegen my book, and telling the local bookstores when –scandalously– they run out of De rennende Hollander. Now I get  support as well from the local paper, De Gelderlander. They pay a lot of attention to the local running culture. In June I met with a reporter, and she wrote a nice little feature this week. Thank you.

In addition, the new issue of Elsevier magazine is all about running, with my story about the New York City Marathon. It features an ad for the book. Thanks to my colleagues and the Editor.

De rennende Hollander is for sale here.

Do it yourself

Whenever I speak to friends who have written books we all agree: Book promotion is no easy feat. In the U.S. or Holland or where ever. And it comes down to you, the author. (Unless your name is Karnazes, or Franzen, maybe.) So here we go: my book is definitely still available!

Further amusing thoughts on the dilemmas and angst of the author, here from The New Yorker, and here in a brilliant video.

Meanwhile the New York City Half Marathon was good to me, finally. I had tried to tackle that race twice. In 2009 the heat got me (1:34) and in 2010 I dropped out after 6 miles, a depressing DNF on the biggest stage… This time I got it after a long winter of serious training: a 1:23 PR. Happy days.

Taking New York

Keeping it real

Running with Eddie, as usual

Although my book has been out for a while, reviews and responses keep trickling in. Here is a decidedly mixed one from NUSport, an excellent sports magazine I sometimes write for in Holland. (By the way, the reviewer had the good sense to lavish praise on the cover shot by my dear friend Trevor.) In a blog entry for the New York Flyers, my running team, I go into some of the fallout from De rennende Hollander.

As for the 50K road race on March 6, my second ultra: it was cold, it rained, my legs hurt. Yet I was quite content with an average mile pace of 7:30. Not too shabby for a long run  pre-NYC half and pre-Gansett Marathon. Also, I did not break my hand or anything else. Boring.

I got my sweet niece Vera a pair of Sauconys when she visited New York, and we ran together in Central Park and Riverside Park. How cool is that? Very. Check her out, pre-run in my apartment, and post-run with me on the High Line in Manhattan.