Title: No Run Intended
Author: Hannah Phillips
Pages: 115 Pages
Publisher: Amazon Media
Hannah Phillips never intended to run. Chubby is cute was her motto and cake with pints of cider her diet. Then came ‘the’ fateful night that saw her staring awkwardly at a ‘fat bird’ with her top on. When that ‘fat bird’ turned out to be her very own reflection Hannah ran (quite quickly) to the toilets to wail in self-pity and humiliation. Hannah knew she had to make a decision, so she decided to lace up a pair of trainers she happened to have in the cupboard and head for the hills…or at least to the nearest park…if she could ever make it.
Chased by geese, the police and Jack Russel’s, No Run Intended is a small story about a big journey that follows Hannah’s running progress through good times, bad times and can’t be bothered times.
Deeply honest, insightful and a little bit funny, it’s definitely not a how to but a what if kind of book that celebrates running in all its beautiful, ugly glory.
In 2009, I decided that I was sick of being a chubbo. Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t massive but I had never really had a boyfriend, was never really happy with my weight and I just decided that it was sh*t or bust. Overall I lost two and half stone mostly due to dieting but a little to do with the fact that I had taken up running.
I was always scared of running. I was the kid in school who was dying on level four of the Bleep Test. I was out “power walking” when I decided to overtake someone and I realised that I could actually run. So I started running. I ran in the cold, I ran in the rain, heck I even ran on Christmas morning before opening presents.
And then I stopped.
In part, it was because I started panicking. I have Ulcerative Colitis and I am convinced that if I am more than a manageable few meters away from a bathroom I will soil myself. Further to this I suffer with osteopenia which causes extreme (but infrequent) pain in my hip. But if I am truly honest, it is because I am lazy….and scared.
I heard about Hannah Phillips’ books when watching the Great North Run. I watch marathon and half marathons saying to the TV “I can do that” whilst dunking a biscuit in my large cup of tea. But then Hannah Phillips came on my screen and read a poem that struck a chord. She talked of all the excuses that we come up with: It’s too cold, it’s too hot, I’m not in the mood – blah-de-blah-de-blah – and every single one of them I have given. It was like a wake-up call.
But on to the review of the book No Run Intended. I loved it. The memoir read like a novella. I think because it was a true story it packed a realistic emotional punch. Hannah Phillips came across as strong, determined and really lovely. She had been through so much and she literally allowed you access all areas into her life. The lovely parts and the unhappy heartbreaking parts and due to this she really pulls the reader into her world.
Some books about running are patronising and some are told from the perspective of someone who is naturally athletic, naturally skinny and don’t find the mental blockage an issue. Hannah Phillips’ No Run Intended is not like this. It is a wonderful read.
So now all that is left for me to do is to dust off my trainers and be brave.
No Run Intended by Hannah Phillips is available now.
For more information regarding Hannah Phillips please visit her Twitter page (@Hannah3phillips).