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Biographies & Memoirs

It's Not Just About Running: Reflections on Life and Change in Egypt

By A. I. Shoukry


Six years after witnessing the Egyptian revolution in 2011, chanting with the crowds “Bread, Freedom, Social Justice,” and living all its hopes and downfall, author and political activist A. I. Shoukry finds himself in despair and fear to lose his freedom. He decided to take a break from politics and start running, but will he find freedom?

Shoukry describes his running moments like a window with a sunrise view for a prisoner kept in solitary confinement. A memoir about self-discovery and searching for freedom and love of life. It's about the integration of body, mind, and soul. It’s about family and friends, relationships, and work.

From being barely able to run 500 meters, he became a half-marathon runner aged 39. In this book, Shoukry explores the meanings of faith, pain, stress, fear, death, life, solitude, happiness, and passion. He has truly put his heart on paper.

If you’ve ever dreamed of running—for your health, for your mind, for therapy, or even for parliament, this book is for you. Whether you’re a newbie runner, a seasoned pro, or have never donned a pair of running shoes but want to start—open this book and start running with Ahmed through Egypt.


I was half-naked, wearing my shorts, running into the desert, shouting “Freedom!” This is how the story ends.

This book isn’t just about running; it’s about a runner’s reflections on life and change in Egypt. It’s a memoir about self-discovery and searching for freedom and the love of life.

What started out as a typical midlife crisis turned into a passion, a lifestyle, and a personal journey.

I was approaching my 40th birthday and wanted to get back in shape. Two years previous, I couldn’t even run 500 meters. Today, I’m in the best shape of my life.

I have raced in two half-marathons, and my next mission will be finishing a full marathon.

When I say this book isn’t just about running, I mean that it’s also about family, friends, relationships, and work. It’s about the integration of body, mind, and soul. It’s about pain, stress, fear, death, life, solitude, happiness, passion, and freedom. So, get ready for an emotional ride. 

About the author

Ahmed I. Shoukry is an Associate Professor of Urology at Cairo University, Egypt. He started blogging in 2004 and launched a portal for independent bloggers in 2007. In late 2017, he released the bestselling book In or Out. His latest book is Anchor System Thinking. view profile

Published on June 20, 2018

Published by

20000 words

Worked with a Reedsy professional 🏆

Genre: Biographies & memoirs

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