Out On Your Feet: The Hallucinatory World of Hundred-Mile Walking
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Aurum publish Out On Your Feet: The Hallucinatory World of Hundred-Mile Walking , LDWA member Julie Welch's book about her first attempt to walk the LDWA 100 mile event.
Publisher's Information 2009
It sounds an innocuous pastime: a group of – often elderly, rarely youthful – walking enthusiasts gather once a year in a picturesque part of the English landscape for a nice long walk. Well, actually, an extremely long and thoroughly not-nice walk. A hundred miles, in fact, non-stop: long enough for most of the competitors to see the sun set and come up again twice. For some inexplicable reason Julie Welch, who had edited for some years the magazine of the Long Distance Walkers Association, became fascinated by the idea of the annual Hundred, and eventually had to take part herself. This is the story of the strange world of walkers she encountered along the way, from theorising mathematicians to sturdy middle-aged spinsters, and of the literally hallucinatory world she and her companions found themselves in as the Hundred pushed them beyond exhaustion – when the twilit landscape became peopled with elephants, clowns, bands of nuns and prehistoric fish… A sports book from left-field to be spoken of in the same breath as Aurum’s fell-running classic Feet in the Clouds, Out On Your Feet is a tale of quaint Englishness gone wild, technicolor and surreal.
Julie Welch’s previous book was 26.2, about the London Marathon. She was the first woman to be a football correspondent for a national newspaper. She lives in London.
In 2004 Aurum published Richard Askwith's Feet in the Clouds, his book about the remarkable sport of fell-running. It was quickly acclaimed as a classic sports book, and has gone on to sell, at the most recent count, over 30,000 copies. Now Aurum publishes another book which promises to be a similarly maverick sports book classic. For some years Julie Welch edited the magazine of the Long Distance Walkers Association (a remarkably large group of people who meet up most weekends to accomplish arduously long walking challenges 30, 40, 50 miles long). And she became more and more intrigued, even obsessed, with the highlight (others might say nadir) of the long-distance-walking calendar: the annual Hundred. Walking a hundred miles, non-stop, within 48 hours - watching the sun come up twice...So eventually she decided she had to have a go herself. This is the story of what happened: of the 50-mile walks she took part in to build up to the big day; the singular, admirable, sometimes eccentric and above all tough as old boots members of the long-distance fraternity, and finally (as far as she can remember) recollects the full wonder, pain, horror, exhilaration, even hallucination (from groups of nuns to children's roadside picnics at 4 in the morning) of walking a Hundred.
About the Author
Julie Welch is a highly regarded sports writer and journalist. Her previous book was 26..2, about running the London Marathon. The writes regularly on football and was the first female football correspondent for a national newspaper. She lives in London.