17 Best Running Books for Beginners( with helpful running training tips!)

Best Running Books for Beginners
A Runner Training On The Road

Why should running include reading running books for beginners? Whether you are a beginner to running or a seasoned runner, one of the toughest obstacles you will have to overcome is your mind. Reading will not only help train but also conquer your brain. As runners, we all aim to stay physically, emotionally, and mentally sharp. 

Similarly to running, reading has tremendous benefits. A study has shown that cognitive activities, including reading, might delay the beginning of memory decline in persons who develop dementia. Another research found that reading books might affect longevity. 

Let’s start with the key factors to consider when picking running books as a beginner.

Table of Contents

Choosing The Best Running Books for Beginners –  What Factors to Consider?

As an avid reader, reading books has helped me improve all areas of my life. So, I have compiled a list of top-running books for beginners.

Reading these running books for beginners will promote good running practice, enhance your willpower, and strengthen your self-discipline.

Each book in this compilation of these best running books for beginners will provide you with a unique perspective on running. Each book will also help you realize your potential as a sports player, whether you are a beginner runner or a marathon runner.

What these books teach is to strive to become a better YOU.

Naturally, searching online or browsing in a bookstore can be overwhelming. Learning how to choose a book to read for beginner runners will help save a lot of time. 

There are four major factors to keep in mind when choosing the best running books for beginners.

1- Author

Selecting books based on the author is comparable to choosing which movies to watch based on the actor. For instance, I will most likely watch a movie if Scarlett Johansson, Denzel Washington, Will Smith, or Matthew McCaughey is in the movie. 

The same principle applies to books. For instance, if Charles Duhigg, Cal Newport, and Seth Godin wrote a book, I would certainly read it. So you may read a book because of the author’s authority in the field. 

2- Reviews

The second factor to pay attention to is the reviews. Always check online for reviews, both positive and negative.

Be on the lookout for fake reviews. An excellent place to start is Amazon (USA), and I read what others said about the book and the authors. Does this book help change other people’s lives?  

3- Subject

The other factor in choosing the right books to read is the subject. Intentionally select which area of your life you would like to improve.

For example, immerse yourself in the best beginner running books if you want to start or improve your running skills. Maybe you want to improve your diet or lose weight, read the best nutrition and diet books. 

4- Recommendation

The fourth factor is the believability of the person recommending you the best beginner running books. Did the person read the book?

When a person suggests, she/he should say, “I read this book, here’s what I got out of it, and based on what you are looking for, I think this is a perfect book for you.” 

A book recommendation must be based on your current needs. The skill you are trying to improve right now and, for instance, running fasterrunning to prevent injuryhow to start running when out of shape.

As Abraham Lincoln once said, our capacity and taste for reading give us access to whatever others have already discovered. When you read, you are practically borrowing others’ experiences.

I encourage you to watch the video below to learn how to choose the right books to read.

How to Choose the Right Books to Read – Valuetainment

Books That Train the Runner’s Mind

The greatest obstacle faced by people who begin to run is their mindset. The main difference between ultra-marathoners and beginner runners is their mindset.

To become a champion is the master your mind and beliefs. Once you have the right mindset, the impossible does not exist.

Cant Hurt Me Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds

Can’t Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds – In this book, David Goggins shares his experience that will illuminate a path that anyone can follow to push past pain, demolish fear, and reach their full potential.

David Goggins is recognized as the toughest man alive.

Through self-discipline, mental toughness, and hard work, Goggins transformed himself from a depressed, overweight young man into becoming one of the world’s top endurance athletes. He is the only man in history to complete elite training as a Navy SEAL, Army Ranger, and Air Force Tactical Air Controller.

The Power of Habit Why We Do What We do in Life and Business

The Power of Habit – In this research-based book, Charles Duhigg describes how our habits work backed with science, research, and real-life stories. This book will give you practical strategies and techniques that you can apply to change and improve your running habits.

Mans Search for Meaning The Classic Tribute to Hope from the Holocaust

Man’s Search for Meaning – Viktor Frankl shares his life story spent in four different Nazi concentration camps, including Auschwitz. Frankl shows that under any conditions, life holds an inherent meaning. He argues that having “WHY” can help us overcome any circumstances.

This book shows us that: to live is to suffer and find meaning in the suffering.

Above all, the ONLY obstacle between our dreams/goals/happiness and us is suffering, and if we can accept to bear suffering, we can achieve what seems to be impossible. We must recognize that suffering is a part of the process of living, of memorable experiences, to success.

The Power of Your Subconscious Mind

The Power of Your Subconscious Mind – In this book, Dr. Joseph Murphy presents you with the tools you will need to unlock the awesome powers of your subconscious mind. Use your mind to become a disciplined runner and transform your physical well-being.

When you understand how to apply and unlock the awesome powers of your subconscious mind, you will be able to accomplish anything you set your mind to. 

Mindset The New Psychology of Success

Mindset: The New Psychology of Success – In this brilliant book, Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D., demonstrates how success in every area of human endeavor can be dramatically influenced by how we think about our talents and abilities. 

This book is considered a reference book that can remind you of what you can do to help yourself, your child, or anyone facing a struggle.

Discipline Equals Freedom Field Manual

Discipline Equals Freedom: Field Manual – In this book, Jocko Willink shares his mantra: the mental and physical restraints he imposes on himself to achieve freedom in all aspects of life. In other words, find your will, find your discipline – and you will find your freedom

Jocko Willink shares strategies and tactics for conquering weakness, procrastination, and fear. He also shares valuable physical training presented in workouts for all levels, including a beginner runner. 

The book is also full of best sleep habits and food intake recommendations to optimize performance. You will discover the keys to becoming stronger, smarter, faster, and healthier. 

Books That Prevent Injury and Train the Runner’s Body

Anatomy for Runners Unlocking Your Athletic Potential for Health Speed and Injury Prevention

Anatomy for Runners: Unlocking Your Athletic Potential for Health, Speed, and Injury Prevention – Jay Dicharry combines different fields of medical care, biomechanical analysis, and coaching.

Reading this book will help you avoid common injuries and become your best runner. 

The book answers most of the common questions that athletes have: Do runners need to stretch? What are the best ways to run? What are the causes of injuries? Which shoes are best for running? Is running barefoot beneficial?  

Running Like a Girl Notes on Learning to Run

Running Like a Girl – Alexandra Heminsley shares her story on how to make running a part of your life and reaps the rewards.

It is not just the obvious things, like weight loss, health, and glowing skin, but self-confidence and immeasurable daily pleasure.    

10 Minute Toughness The Mental Training Program for Winning Before the Game Begins

10-Minute Toughness – This book will help you develop the mental toughness needed for success.

Use this book as your coach for boosting your brainpower and achieving a competitive edge in whatever game you play.

Daniels Running Formula

Daniels’ Running Formula – Reading this book will guide you through training at precisely the right intensity to run stronger, longer, and faster. The book incorporates training intensities to help you build endurance, strength, and speed. 

After reading this book, you will be able to track the time you spend at each level, train more efficiently, and optimize results.

Born to Run A Hidden Tribe Superathletes and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen

Born to Run – The book is full of incredible characters, amazing athletic achievements, cutting-edge science, and pure inspiration.

This book is an epic adventure that begins with a straightforward question: Why does my foot hurt?

In searching for an answer, Christopher McDougall sets off to find a tribe of the world’s greatest distance runners and learn their secrets. In the process, McDougall shows us that everything we thought we knew about running is wrong.

Relentless Forward Progress A Guide to Running Ultramarathons

Relentless Forward Progress – Bryon Powell covers every aspect of training for and racing ultra distances.

This book is considered the first how-to manual for aspiring ultrarunners.

No Meat Athlete Run on Plants and Discover Your Fittest Fastest Happiest Self

No Meat Athlete – Matt Frazier shows you the endless benefits of embracing a meat-free athletic lifestyle: Weight loss and how you can improve your energy levels to help with not just athletic performance but your day-to-day life.

This book is a great combination of the valuable elements of proven training strategies, inspirational stories, as well as innovative recipes to create a guide for meatless athletes.

How Bad Do You Want It Mastering the Psychology of Mind over Muscle

How Bad Do You Want It? – This book shows that the most crucial question in endurance sports is: how bad do you want it? The book will forever change how you answer this question and show you how to master the psychology of mind over muscle. You discover: having faith in your training is as essential as the training itself.

It also shows that your mental toughness determines how close you can get to your physical limit.

The Big Book of Endurance Training and Racing

The Big Book of Endurance Training and Racing – Dr. Philip Maffetone explains the “truths” about endurance, such as that refined carbohydrates reduce endurance energy and disrupt hormone balance.

He offers an “individualized” outlook with a unique system that helps you build a strong aerobic base for increased fat burning, weight loss, sustained energy, and a healthy immune system.

Build Your Running Body A Total Body Fitness Plan for All Distance Runners from Milers to Ultramarathoners―Run Farther Faster and Injury Free 1

Build Your Running Body – This book is a combination of race strategy, the pros and cons of stretching, Nutrition guidance, and Beginners’ guidelines.

You can use this book as an easy-to-use workout manual to help you improve your workout and running.

What I Talk About When I Talk About Running A Memoir

What I Talk About When I Talk About Running: A Memoir – Reading this book will help you see beyond running. It shows that running is the essence of experiencing life to the fullest without limits. 


What to read next:

Final Thoughts

In choosing a book to read to improve any area of your life, choose a book that is right for you. Remember, knowledge is power, but without action, it will not help you.

Ready to become a better version of yourself in all personal, business, and professional areas? 

  • Have you read any of these books?
  • What books would you recommend to beginner runners? 
  • What impacts have running books made on you? 


Hello friends, I am Altiné I am SO excited you are here! I believe in YOUR POWER to transform the world through a healthy lifestyle and diet, and that physical activity and diet are EVERYTHING when it comes to your health and well-being. My goal is to offer you a simple and science-based approach to building muscle, losing fat, getting happy and healthy, and living a meaningful and impactful life for you and your loved ones. So YOU can look better, feel better, live better, and go make more impact. Let’s do it.

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