Out On Your Feet: The Hallucinatory World of Hundred-Mile Walking

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Aurum Press, Jan 13, 2014 - Sports & Recreation - 256 pages

For five years Julie Welch, a sports writer and marathon runner, edited the magazine of the Long Distance Walkers Association -a remarkably large group of people who meet up most weekends to undertake arduous walking challenges 20, 40 or 60 miles long.

The highlight, (though others might well say nadir!) of the Walkers’ calendar has long since been the annual ‘ Hundred’ . First held in 1973, and every year since, its eclectic (but uniformly addicted) participants will walk a hundred miles, non-stop, within 48 hours – watching the sun set and rise again… twice.

The annual Hundreds both beguiled and allured Julie until the sports journalist felt herself powerless to resist; she decided she had to have a go herself.

Out On Your Feet 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, often eccentric and above all tough-as-old-boots members of the long-distance fraternity; and finally the full wonder, pain, horror, exhilaration, even hallucination of walking a Hundred. (With fatigue as a constant travel companion, the mind will play tricks… )

This highly entertaining book delves into a fascinating sub-culture that will undoubtedly baffle and inspire in equal measure.


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About the author (2014)

Julie Welch is a highly regarded sports journalist, author and screenwriter who initially made her name by becoming the first female Fleet Street journalist to report on a game of football, after covering a match between Coventry City and Tottenham Hotspur for the Observer in 1969. Julie is also the author of a number of sports books, including Long Distance Information, the story of the author's life-changing decision to take up running, and the journey of self-discovery that ensued; 26:2, a book about running the London Marathon, and The Ghost of White Hart Lane –a biography of ‘60s Tottenham Hotspur legend, John White, who died aged 27. She also edited the Long Distance Walkers Association magazine, and has participated in the annual "Hundred" – walking 100 miles non-stop over 48 hours. Her book about her experiences, Out on Your Feet: The Hallucinatory World of Hundred-Mile Walking, which was published by Aurum in 2009.

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