Book Review: Vassos Alexander – Running Up That Hill

Last weekend me and my beautiful wife spent a few days in Sowerby Bridge, where among other things we both managed to complete our fiftieth parkrun (read about it here). The reason we were there was because I had entered Canalathon; a 50km run from Manchester to Sowerby Bridge along the Rochdale Canal, which you will be able to read about as soon as I’ve written it 🙂


I’m getting slightly ahead of myself. Vassos Alexander used to be the sports guy on the Chris Evans Radio 2 Breakfast Show, until they moved to Virgin. He also co-presents the parkrun free weekly times podcast (read about it here). As well as all that, he is a runner, and a very good ultra-runner, which is what this book is all about. Seeing as Canalathon would be my first point to point ultra run, it seemed apt to read about ultra running in the days before the race. Maybe I could pick up some last minute tips, or just get a bit of a mental boost.

Of course for Vassos, a 50km run is nothing to write home about, as he has completed 50 milers, 100 milers and Spartathon. The final race, Spartathon, threads it’s way throughout the book, with the history and background.

Also throughout the book are interviews with some of the best known ultra runners, including Ben Smith (read about him here), and Kilian Jornet, as well as Chrissie Wellington and many others. This adds another dimension to the book, especially with interesting tales from regular people, who just happen to enjoy longer than normal runs. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book, and even if you have no intention of ever running further than a marathon, the book is still a very good read.

2 thoughts on “Book Review: Vassos Alexander – Running Up That Hill

  1. Pingback: 50km Canalathon | Beards and Triathlons

  2. Pingback: Running Books by the Dozen | Beards and Triathlons

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