Running Around the Coast of Britain – Life, Love and (Very) Loose Plans.
Longlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award 2021
Running away from your problems doesn’t solve anything – but sometimes it’s more fun than dealing with them
Elise was spending a lot of time crying on buses. She had just graduated from university; she had a shiny new flat, her first proper job and a budding relationship – and they were all making her utterly miserable. Sitting at work one day, she hit upon the obvious solution:
Run 5,000 miles around the coast of Britain, carrying her kit on her back.
Six months later Elise set off, with absolutely no ultra-running experience, unable to read a map and having never pitched a tent alone before. Over the 301 days that followed she developed a debilitating fear of farmyard animals, cried on a lot of beaches and saw Britain at its most wild and wonderful.
Coasting is about putting one foot in front of the other, even when it feels impossible, and trying to enjoy it too. With heart and humour, Elise explores the thrill of taking risks and putting your trust in total strangers, and learns some home truths along the way.
‘Reading Coasting is like listening to a friend tell a tale down the pub that you can’t quite believe. Elise’s storytelling is hilarious, warm-hearted and wonderfully down-to-earth. It’s the kind of book that makes you want to lace up your trainers and start running towards that mad idea you once had. There’s no doubt that Elise’s gung-ho attitude is her superpower. Her kryptonite? Cows.’
Anna McNuff, author and adventurer
‘Elise’s irresistibly readable adventures are both ordinary and extraordinary at the same time. She’s an inspiration.’
Damian Hall, author and ultrarunner
‘Funny and engaging and inspiring… an absolute gem.’
Vassos Alexander, presenter, author and runner
‘An honest and exciting tale of how a dream became an awesome reality. Definitely worth a read!’
Ben Smith, founder of The 401 Challenge
‘I was already laughing at the Dedication and this continued all the way to the very last page. Elise Downing is a comedy genius and has a heart of gold!’
Danny Bent, author, runner and founder of Project Awesome
‘Elise brings so much fun and energy, as well as raw honesty, to the world of adventure books, and her incredible journey is an inspiration to young (and old!) adventurers.’
Jenny Tough, author, adventurer and editor of Tough Women Adventure Stories
‘Thoughtful, funny and beautifully written. Just goes to show that there’s a ram-spinning, swashbuckling adventure right there on your doorstep.’
Huw Jack Brassington, writer, presenter and adventurer