I’ve never written a book review before so was very excited to be asked to do so for Tricurious by Laura Fountain and Katie King. It took me a little while to realise that I had already been following Laura’s blog (Lazy Girl Running) for a while!
Unlike other books of its genre, I found the book engaging from the start. I mean, look at the cover, why wouldn’t you want to read it?
I know you shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover but I’m shallow and if it doesn’t appeal from the outside, there’s no way I’m going in! But I digress!
From the start I could completely identify with the writers. The conversational writing style led me to imagine being in the pub with Laura and Katie while they recounted their adventures over a beer.
The format worked well for me. The book is aimed primarily at triathlon novices (errrm that’s me then) and, dare I say it, female novices (yep, good, still me!). That’s not to say it wouldn’t be useful for a guy, I just think the personal experiences make it more appealing for the girls. Laura and Katie take it in turns to share first their personal (generally, laugh out loud funny) experiences of each aspect of a tri, followed by a chapter of advice and tips for pitfalls to avoid by whomever of the two of them is ‘the expert’.
As a total novice with my first tri looming on Star Wars Day this year, I have taken a lot from the book. It’s answered lots of race day questions as well as addressing some of ‘those topics’ you don’t want to talk about in polite company!
Laura and Katie come across as reassuringly normal people. They aren’t elite athletes and they aren’t super rich. They have to train around their jobs and they have to take budgets into account when planning their races. And, a key point, they have learned their sport through trial, error and bitter experiences.
Underneath the humour though, you soon understand these girls are not ‘normal’. They are gutsy, determined and focused. And a complete inspiration! They are passionate about triathlon as a whole but also the individual elements in their own rights. You will them on as they talk about their races and, without spoiling anything, you want to cry with them when things get tough.
From Laura’s method of purchasing her first road bike and learning to ride, through to Katie’s description of the horror of the near nudity involved in swimming, I found myself smiling as I recognised my own experiences.
As I drafted this review, I started making a list of the bits of the book I loved. But I soon realised I was going to end up listing all of it, so I stopped! I quite literally couldn’t put this book down and, as with all great books, I was disappointed when I finished it and it was over! However, “Don’t drown, don’t fall of the bike and complete the race” was probably the key quote of the whole book for me!
Tricurious is a brilliant, no holds barred book that celebrates the highs and doesn’t gloss over the lows of learning to be a triathlete. In my opinion it’s a must read for anyone (especially ladies) who have ever considered a tri, and even those who haven’t (yet). It puts training into perspective and reminds you that, at the end of the day, for us normal folk, sport is a hobby and should be enjoyed as such!
*Tricurious by Laura Fountain and Katie King will be out on 12th March 2015 and published by Summersdale Publishers. I was provided with a free pre-publication copy by Waterside Books.*