Murakami draws distinct parallels between running and writing novels. Both are done with an individual testing themselves and developing their training over months and years to reach their goal.
As he recalls getting ready for his first marathon and building up to his latest attempt in New York he expands on the idea that ultimately the only think, apart from time, challenging a long distance runner is themselves.
Likewise with writing a novel the writer must dig deep for the creative seam and then train themselves how best to keep the mind focused and the brain exercised.
I’m not sure I could ever do a marathon a year and stick to a punishing running regime but putting those reservations to one side this is inspirational stuff. It also provides you with a glimpse inside the mind of a writer without the traditional stuff about how and why they write.