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Running Biographies

The Looniness of the Long Distance Runner: An Unfit Londoner's Attempt to Run the New York City Marathon from Scratch by Russell Taylor

Who would guess that a book on training for a marathon could not only be highly entertaining but even howlingly funny? Taylor, a thirtysomething London journalist, decides to enter the New York City Marathon and write a book about it. Given that his most recent running experience was at a school sports day in 1971, he's got a long way to go. Taylor's self-deprecating, sardonic writing style turns what could have been tiresome descriptions of his training regime and his first few races into laugh-aloud prose. His transformation from novice jogger to hard-bodied marathoner wins him a 7,659th-place finish (out of 32,000) in the NYC Marathon and will have readers suffering (and laughing) right along with him through the preparations. Although it bogs down occasionally (there's not much that's funny about nutritional supplements or runner's nipple), Taylor's book is ultimately both amusing and eye-opening and will appeal to a wide range of readers--even those whose running experience is limited to sprinting for their morning bus. Emily Melton
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Marathon by Richard Harteis

To run a marathon, to sustain a relationship, to overcome illness with dignity--all are lessons in physical and spiritual endurance, knowledge hard won indeed. In this splendid book, Richard Harteis recounts the parallel stories of training for his first marathon and, on a deeper level, the course of this long relationship with one of our greatest living poets, William Meredith, a relationship shadowed by the older man's crippling stroke.

Harteis was forty-one when he decided to run his first marathon in New York in 1987. A successful writer and health professional, he was in the seventeenth year of his relationship with William, who was nearing seventy, and he had just had a brush with serious illness himself. The marathon would test him as did caring for and loving William, now severely impaired in speech and much dependent on him. In this book he has given us an account of the profound bond between two men and a meditation on the discipline required to achieve difficult goals, physical and spiritual

 

Pre : The Story of America's Greatest Running Legend, Steve by Tom Jordon

From Publishers Weekly
Written in 1977, this biography was evidently resurrected because of a recent TV special and two planned motion pictures about the Oregon long-distance runner, whose life was cut short in 1975 when he crashed his sports car at age 24. The book gives details of Prefontaine's efforts on the track?where he set many national records, some even while in college?and demonstrates his dedication to running, but it tells readers little about his personal life, perhaps because, as Jordan points out in the introduction, "His pace was so frenetic... that his deep friendships outside of family and love relationships were few." The two major problems Pre encountered as an athlete were his inability to do as well in Europe as at home and his annoyance with the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) and its demand that amateur athletes accept no formal support, although, the author notes, many meets gave under-the-table payments to top box-office draws. Jordan, who is on the staff of Track & Field News, captures his subject's charisma, but his book seems incomplete. There are six sidebars about Prefontaine by noted runners including Alberto Salazar, Mary Slaney and Frank Shorter. Photos. (Apr.) FYI: The film Prefontaine is playing at theaters now. Disney will release a film on the runner later this year.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Deek : the making of Australia's world marathon champion by Robert De Castella
Documents Deek's training and rise to the top.
One Man's Leg by Paul Martin
As a kid, athletic competition provided some relief from an otherwise difficult childhood. Later, living in a foster home, it was the stage on which to gain attention that didn't seem to be available elsewhere. But it was only at the age of 25, when he had lost a part of the very thing he relied on most to compete (specifically, the lower half of his left leg), that Paul Martin made his commitment--and went on to become a world champion triathlete and Paralympic competitor.
The Greatest: The Hail Gabrselassie Story by Jim Denison
Recently release (2004), and includes Haile's races at the Athens Olympics
  


This page last updated: Saturday 20 March 2010


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This page last updated: Saturday 20 March 2010


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