By Elissa Maudlin
On a Saturday morning in January, 47-year-old Don Hahn of Westfield sat in his office recliner thinking about the next steps in his life. Near him, he had a shelf with running-related books. He wondered if others who didn’t know these books were out there could benefit from reading them.
From this idea, his new business, Runnerd, was born. It aims to connect visitors to running-related movies, podcasts and more and has published books, too.
“(Runnerd) is (for) people who can’t get enough of running,” Hahn said. “Like, we talk about it all the time. We eat, sleep and breathe it.”
One aspect of Hahn’s company is the Runnerd Library, an online space for running enthusiasts with a collection of books, podcasts and other offerings related to the sport.
When Hahn ran a marathon for a charity event in 2005, he said he grabbed any running book he could find. His goal with Runnerd is to create a more curated list of running content.
The brand produces the “Runnerd Library” podcast and publishes books under Runnerd Press, including two books released in July.
One is Bill Kenley’s series of short stories, “Tiny Little Running Shorts,” and Tim Byers’ young-adult World War II book, “The Order of the Red Lion.” Hahn read Byers’ manuscript and wanted to publish it despite it not fitting the running theme.
“I’ve never published a book before, so there was really a good spirit of communication and cooperation to try and figure out how to make this work,” said Byers, a 62-year-old Carmel resident, about the process.
When it comes to publishing, Hahn said he wants his company to produce great stories.
“When you see that Runnerd Press imprint on the side of a book, you know that you can pick that up and you’re going to have a good story,” he said.
Stan Collesano, a Fishers resident and friend of Hahn’s, helped Hahn with legal work as a retired attorney and provided business advice. He said he wants to see the company expand.
“Just watch it,” Collesano said. “It’s going to continue to grow and it’s going to be a central location for all runners.”
Learn more at runnerdlibrary.com.