We spoke with marathon runner, author and BBC Radio 2 sports broadcaster Vassos Alexander about his book, 'Don't Stop Me Now', a book dedicated to the joy of running. But which proved harder - running a marathon or writing a book?
Vassos' inspiration for Don't Stop Me Now
'If some bloke like me can find anything approaching a mindfulness state whilst running, then anyone can. I thought it would be great to write a book celebrating that feeling, with a sincerely felt hope that I might inspire one or two people to give it a go.'
Vassos on the benefits of running
'I realised how good running is, physically and mentally and how it gives you space -mental space, physical space, and space to connect with your surroundings.'
What do runners and writers have in common?
'Determination. If you just think get to the end of this mile, get to the end of the street, it's a lot easier. The same for when you're writing a book... just get to the end of the sentence, end of the paragraph, and end of the page!'
An unusual writing process...
‘I started writing on my phone and I thought this is the way to do it! I wrote it in little bits. Poor Charlotte, the editor, when she came to get the manuscript...she got about sixty emails all in one go from the Notes section of my iPhone!
Running his first marathon, to writing his first book. What was harder?
‘The first marathon, I hit a wall. I thought I might struggle for content, that I might hit the writing wall, and I never really did. So strange as it may seem, running a marathon is harder than writing a book - who would've thought it?
Vassos’ advice to debut authors
‘Make it a sincerely, authentically held belief or idea. Don’t just do something because you think it might sell. Do it because you really believe in it.'
Watch the full interview with Vassos below.
Vassos Alexander is one of the UK's best known sports broadcasters. Every morning he's heard by ten million people as an integral part of the Chris Evans Breakfast Show on BBC Radio2. He can also be seen presenting on TV, and he commentates on everything from tennis to triathlon, diving to darts. He lives in London with his young family. Follow him on Twitter.