Well-read 4

Fitness Books that take you off the beaten path

These unconventional books are not only fun to explore on their own, but also work well in tandem. Yoga complements nearly any activity, contemplative hiking can take your outdoor experience to a higher level, and expert trail tips for the Front Range —where trail choices are abundant— can’t go wrong.

Trailhead: The Dirt on All 
Things Trail Running

by Lisa Jhung 

Small but mighty, this little guide from a seasoned trail runner is stuffed with great information on everything you can think of, including safety hazards, gear for all terrains and climates, sports nutrition, animals that may want to eat you, fitness conditioning, trail etiquette and more. It’s pragmatic, funny and informative. 


Contemplative Hiking Along the Colorado Front Range: Discovering Your Soul and Reconnecting to Nature on Hiking Trails From Denver to Ft. Collins, Colorado 

by Margaret Emerson

This fun book blends the practicality of a hiking guide with the practice of mindful meditation through a series of exercises that helps readers forge a deeper connection to their environment. Emerson keeps a blog at ContemplativeHiking.com and holds a master’s in ecopsychology: the study of the relationship between humans and the natural environment, and the healing power of our connection to nature. 

Every Body Yoga: Let Go of Fear, Get on the Mat, Love Your Body

by Jessamyn Stanley

We often think we have to be the “right” size before starting fitness activities, especially activities that require wearing spandex in a room full of people. Stanley tackles this self-punishing and depriving perspective in her memoir/guidebook on yoga. A funny, blunt and candid writer, she digs right in to working past self-consciousness.

Our reviewer Cheryl Baker works for Douglas County Libraries. She is a shameless mischief-maker who loves reading, tea and the great outdoors.