Let Your Mind Run

A Memoir of Thinking My Way to Victory
Narrated by: Deena Kastor
Length: 9 hrs and 2 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (1,435 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

New York Times Best Seller

Deena Kastor was a star youth runner with tremendous promise, yet her career almost ended after college, when her competitive method - run as hard as possible, for fear of losing - fostered a frustration and negativity and brought her to the brink of burnout. On the verge of quitting, she took a chance and moved to the high altitudes of Alamosa, Colorado, where legendary coach Joe Vigil had started the first professional distance-running team. There she encountered the idea that would transform her running career: the notion that changing her thinking - shaping her mind to be more encouraging, kind, and resilient - could make her faster than she’d ever imagined possible. Building a mind so strong would take years of effort and discipline, but it would propel Kastor to the pinnacle of running - to American records in every distance from the 5K to the marathon - and to the accomplishment of earning America’s first Olympic medal in the marathon in 20 years.

Let Your Mind Run is a fascinating, intimate look inside the mind of an elite athlete, a remarkable story of achievement, and an insightful primer on how the small steps of cultivating positivity can give anyone a competitive edge.

©2018 Deena Kastor, Michelle Hamilton (P)2018 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

“A candid account about the self-doubt that enters the mind of an elite athlete and how positive thinking made [Kastor] a champion both on and off the course.” (Athletes Quarterly

“Long-distance runner Deena Kastor shows the secret to her success - and as an Olympic medalist and the American female record holder in the marathon, she’s had more than a few - relies less on any inborn talents, but on ‘the power of thought, attitude and perspective.’ Through race day and training anecdotes, she reveals the mental habits anyone can use to unleash their physical and mental potential.” (Furthermore from Equinox, Five Books High Performers Should Read This Month)  

“I have been savoring every story, every morsel of motivation and empowerment; [Kastor] is one of my long time running heroes and I never want this one to end!” (Running 'n' Reading)  

Featured Article: 20 Best Audiobooks for Running Inspiration


Running can be an arduous task, especially for those who are new to the sport. It can also be a life-giving force for those who are already more involved in the running community. Either way, it’s one of the best athletic ventures to couple with a great audiobook. Listening to the inspirational stories of other runners can be just what you need to push through a difficult jog or set a new personal record. These audiobooks are the perfect partners for your next workout.

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Great book

If you ever seen Deena Kastor, she seems to smile A LOT. After reading the book, I now know that the smile reflects her way of thinking. I am not a positive thinking person. Sometimes I get put off by people who are overly positive. But that says more about me than it does about them. The thing I discovered in this book is that I could be positive, too. In my running. In the way I interact with people. In the way I live my life. I’m kind of an old fart, but I’m also willing to try new things that will make my life hopefully more enjoyable. This is a very enjoyable book, even if you don’t run. I would highly recommend it. Thanks, Ms. Kastor. Great job!

17 people found this helpful

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Get Inspired

I've always admired Deena Kastor. Afer reading this book i admire her even more!!! I loved reading her story, hearing her perspective on racing. She has amazing mental strength and was able to reach her peak performance by changing the way she talked to herself and the way she reacted to negativity. She's a total badass!! I'm so inspired.I cant wait to incorporate her methods into my training. this book will make you want to go for a long run, it'll make you want to push yourself to the next level. Thank you Deena!!!

7 people found this helpful

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Awe-inspiring and motivation for whatever your are pursuing

Couldn’t stop listening! Although I feel as though I should have gotten into shape just by listening to her mental voice narrative during training and races! Beautiful and brilliantly told story.

1 person found this helpful

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Great insight into the mind of a champion!

Deena does a fantastic job describing how she found running, and climbed up the ranks as a young high school athlete, through college and into training with Joe Vigil and her team at altitude in CO & CA!

The best part is all the little mindset nuggets that Deena shares as she was preparing for races and during races. I have taken away a lot of positive reminders that I can use in my every day life.

1 person found this helpful

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  • mm
  • 04-27-18

What a fine inspirational book!

This book spoke not just about running but about life. The joy that Deena encouraged in herself was so empowering for me. Thanks for sharing.

3 people found this helpful

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Great book!!!

Absolutely excellent book. Such a great story and great lessons for sport and for life. Really enjoyable!! Very inspiring!

1 person found this helpful

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Motivating Listen

I listened to this audiobook during my short weekday runs whenever I needed something to motivate me, and it served that purpose well. I even picked up a few tips and was reminded of good running practices I’d forgotten. The author isn’t a professional audiobook reader, so some of the inflection is a bit off, but it’s not terribly so. Overall I recommend this.

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Inspiring and fun to listen to while on a run!

It seemed like a sincere reflection on a proven athlete’s life with interesting insights into the evolution of both a career and person. I enjoyed the story’s journey and, even though I’m only a recreational runner with zero running in my childhood, I could relate to Deena’s passion for self improvement throughout her story. It was inspiring to hear her thoughts, doubts and self-encouragement along with her descriptions of the positive people whom she surrounded herself with. I thank her for the enjoyable share and wish her the best!

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So Good a Must Listen/Read!!

Words of wisdom forged from pursuing her potential wherever it led. Deena is an icon of inspiration for all who dare to run.

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Missed the mark for motivation

I love hearing stories of trials and triumphs of runners because they help me when I am unmotivated or tired. But this book did not meet that need for me. The book describes the accomplishments of someone genetics gifted, who had access to the best coaches and a team, personally customized shoes and no other obligations like work or family needs. But sometimes she wasn’t excited to run. That scenario is so far removed from the average runner that the book does not provide any actionable information to improve ones running.

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  • Stuart Blofeld
  • 09-20-18

The best running book I have read/heard!!

I knew of Deena Castor as an elite marathon runner but not the life detail or her performances and records. What drew me to this book was the promise of mind over matter. Using your mind as a powerful tool to improve self and improve running performance. It is a great book with huge insight into every detail of Deena's high school running days, her rise to fame and amazing performances at the highest level. The detail in the race accounts is stunning. I loved every gripping recollection of her racing days. So much to learn and admire from one of the greats of Marathon running. A definite recommendation for anyone looking to be inspired and motivated to train harder, wiser and reach your goals.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Paul Goggins
  • 05-30-20

Beautifuly written and read !

loved this book, smooth well written and soothing, whilst providing a wealth of experience to the listener.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 05-20-20

Interesting life story

Interesting and enjoyable autobiography from a great athlete. Deena describes her many achievements and how she used her mind to overcome negativity.

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  • Ed Wilson
  • 02-18-20

Thoroughly enjoyable

As an amateur runner and creator of negative thoughts, this book ticks all the boxes.
Deena's story telling is both uplifting and informative. Whilst I'll not be hitting the same speed and distances, I can take the lessons on positive thinking and mental fortitude into every long mile and every bad meeting.

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  • CatherineBevan
  • 11-20-19

Excellent story & running book

This is an inspirational book for runners
I was griped thought out what an amazing story
Particularly pleased it is a female runner why are there not more books out there like this
I have advised all my fellow female runners to read it .

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  • Emma Manton
  • 09-17-19

Utterly Inspiring!

Beautifully read by the author herself, this is a truly inspiring insight into the runner's mind.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-27-19

Wonderful and inspirational story

What a wonderful, exciting, captivating and inspirational story. I crave books on running and this one is the best I’ve read to date.

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  • WCL
  • 06-16-19

Excellent all round

One of the best running books available. Well written and read by Deena. A great balance of life story and running anecdotes to engage both the runner and non runner.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 05-19-19

Setting positive mindset for Marathons

A great insight into the mindset of coping with marathons and life. Such a positive mentality and a real perspective into a life as a long distance athlete.

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  • S. Jones
  • 05-13-19

Fascinating!!

Really fascinating look at how Deena got to where she is, and how she conquers her negative thoughts. Love the way she is able to turn her thoughts to her advantage 🙂

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  • MJ Conway
  • 01-03-20

Inspiring

I never knew what Deena’s achievements were exactly. Now I know, to say I am impressed is an understatement! Great listen, inspiring and worth the money you pay for this. I personally took notes on some tips to take with me into the London Marathon. A race of many this American excelled in!

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  • Charis
  • 12-18-19

Great book more about strengthening your mind than running

I’m ne was to running so have tried to emerge myself in the lives of people who are successful and why. This was a great book about overcoming the mental challenges in running but also how that can shape our everyday.

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  • Sean Loo
  • 02-26-19

Enjoyable easy listen

Good if you are in the mood for something positive and easy to listen to.

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  • Niall
  • 11-22-18

wonderful

Such an enjoyable listen and very helpful to us amateurs who love a nice run.

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  • Nikkola
  • 11-13-18

The best book I have bought on audible

This book is uplifting and helpful. The stories of courage are so well executed. Philosophies here apply to life ... not just running. Loved it. Will listen to it again.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-30-18

Positivity abounds

Loved it. The way Deena tells her story from start to finish it helps see the psychological development she went through over her years as an elite athlete. Her attitudes and the advice given to her are applicable to anyone, even if you aren't running.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-25-18

Loved it

I’m really inspired to make some changes that I know will propel me forward thanks to this book and especially Deena’s coach’s wisdom - loved it. I’m about to start reading it again. Loved the quotes at start of each chapter