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14 Minutes: A Running Legend's Life and Death and Life Hardcover – April 10, 2012


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 280 pages
  • Publisher: Rodale Books (April 10, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1609613147
  • ISBN-13: 978-1609613143
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.4 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #589,905 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"14 Minutes is an inspirational account of a man who has fought with the Grim Reaper and won. Since he put on his first pair of running shoes, Alberto Salazar has been defying the odds. Through his memoir, people have the privilege to get to know this truly great man and walk away with a renewed appreciation for life.

—Lance Armstrong, cancer survivor and 7-time Tour de France champion

"A World Record holder who prided himself on his focus, inner drive, and admitted obsession with detail almost loses a race he never thought he'd enter: the one against time. How and why did Alberto survive for 14 minutes with no pulse? His quest to intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually answer these questions gave me a wonderful glimpse inside the mind of this elite marathoner."

—Frank Shorter, Olympic gold medalist, marathon, 1972

"Alberto Salazar has lived a remarkable life—two lives, actually—and this engrossing book does justice to them both, knitting miraculous victories with mysterious declines, and the blind ferocity of competition with the clarity of death. It is a story about running, but it is also about faith, grit, and the importance of chasing something larger than ourselves."

—David Willey, editor-in-chief, Runner’s World

"I’ve known Alberto Salazar since he was a high school runner, but 14 Minutes opened my eyes to who he really is, what he values most, and why he aimed so high. I always felt Alberto had ‘heart’ and this book proves it. It’s a terrific read!"

—Bill Rodgers, Boston and New York City Marathon champion

"A dramatic account of the risks and rewards of top-level long-distance running." 

—Kirkus Reviews

About the Author

Alberto Salazar was the premier American marathoner of the early- to mid-80s. After a top-flight career as a distance runner at the University of Oregon, winning 1978 NCAA cross-country race, Salazar made his marathon début at the 1980 New York Marathon. He won the race again in 1981-82, and in 1981 his time of 2-08:13 was thought to be a world marathon record, but after re-measurement, the course was found to be slightly short. Salazar also won the 1982 Boston Marathon in a dramatic duel with Dick Beardsley, called the "Duel in the Sun". On the track he was TAC 10K champion in 1981 and 1983, and on the roads, he won numerous races short of the marathon distance. His attempt at Olympic honors in 1984 was hampered by injury, which also likely prevented him from making the 1988 Olympic Team. In the early 90s, Salazar began running some ultra-distance events and won the 1994 Comrades Marathon in South Africa, over 90 km, (56 miles). Salazar has worked as a consultant to Nike and a personal coach to many distance runners.
 
John Brant has written regularly for Runner’s World and Outside magazine. His work has appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Rolling Stone, and National Geographic Adventure among other publications. Duel in the Sun, on which this book is based, is Brant’s first book.

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Customer Reviews

Alberto Salazar is an interesting man.
D. F. Whipple
He displays pride in his accomplishments, which were indeed great, but he also displays a humility and faith that is commendable.
Amazon Customer
Anyway, that is just the biggest issue I have with this book.
M. Roberts

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A. R. Spitzer on May 4, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Alberto Salazar's biography to date is a well written, honest look back at a career that was far too short and ended much too early because of a debilitating series of events and injuries. In the early 1980's, Salazar was the most dominant marathoner and distance runner of the era, and he has now become one of the foremost distance running coaches in the country. Salazar's description of his early career highlights the fact that he was a distance running prodigy, much like one of the outstanding runners that he currently coaches, Galen Rupp. Salazar's perspective on bringing Rupp along in a manner that avoids the injuries that shortened his career I found especially interesting. If Rupp has success at the upcoming London Olympics, the story will be that much more satisfying on many levels.

If there is one thing missing from the book, though, it is that Salazar's internal experiences as a runner are not elaborated upon very much, and there is little discussion about his own training at the peak of his career. The outstanding years that he spent in college at Oregon seem to be only superficially described. During the period in which Salazar's career was devastated by injuries must have been especially painful, yet one always feels as if a good part of the emotional content here is being held back from the reader. I would also have liked to have read a little more about his own insights about the effort that it takes to set the world marathon record, as well as many of his other accomplishments. One especially interesting aspect of the book was the relationship that Salazar's father had with Fidel Castro and Che Guevara, which shaped not only his father's world, but his father's personality and how that personality may have influenced Alberto's efforts to become the athlete that he was.
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32 of 41 people found the following review helpful By M. Roberts on June 24, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I read an excerpt of this book in a magazine and was really looking forward to it. Alberto Salazar has always been arrogant and cocky but this book just seems to shine a light on his self-glorification. He seems to believe himself a God-appointed or self-appointed deity in himself. The thing that did it for me was him slamming Dick Beardsley. If you are not familiar with the 1982 "Duel in the Sun," they were neck in neck in that race. Alberto had taken the lead and for some reasons there were too many motorcycle cops which closed in around Alberto, blocking off Beardsley. Beardsley did get around the cops and caught up with Alberto. The video is on You Tube, it is really amazing. Alberto won by two seconds. You can debate this all you want and even Alberto admitted that he had underestimated Beardsley. But after that he goes on and on about how he would have won anyway and then goes on further to slam Beardsley saying that the race was Beardsley's peak and that he went back to his dairy farm and suffered great misfortune, several accidents, became addicted to painkillers "and I wrote a check to help him out." Did he really need to put that in there? It sounds as if he just wanted to delineate how superior he is. Really tactless and lacking grace. Listen to Beardsley talk about it and he never once blames the cops, just says that Alberto out-kicked him in the end. But you know what? It took Beardsley a lot longer than two seconds to get around the cops. Anyway, that is just the biggest issue I have with this book. This guy is a complete jerk. Not just the self-assurance of a great athlete that knows he is great but just a jerk. He even puts down Bill Rodgers, the guy that mentored him, and goes on about how superior he is to Bill Rodgers. Wow. I expected a lot more.Read more ›
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Paul on May 2, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Just finished reading Alberto's book, and came away inspired and impressed that he would be so open and honest about his background and running career. I thought it was a great read, and felt compelled to get to the finish to take it all in. I also appreciated his personal views on his faith and how it plays a role in his life. You may not agree with him, although I do, but I don't see how you can criticize his honest and straightforward answers to his faith.

As a runner of similar age I'm also in awe of what Alberto accomplished, and continues to accomplish as a coach. Makes me even more a fan of the Nike Oregon Project. I wish them all great success.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By William McArthur on January 21, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Having read great running stories (I strongly recommend Born to Run and Ultramarathon Man) “14 Minutes” reminds us running can be extremely competitive to the point that glory is all that matters. I couldn’t believe the editor had the nerve to publish a book that presents Salazar as such an arrogant athlete. It is just painful to go through the continuous pounding of how great he was - the finest, fastest, and most handsome runner in the world. We get it!!

I wouldn’t recommend it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Alex Hutchinson VINE VOICE on March 6, 2013
Format: Hardcover
After death experiences, as they are now known, can have a profound effect on people. If that person also happens to be passionate and deeply religious than the result strikes with resonance. World Record winning marathon runner Alberto Salazar has done the impossible in more ways than one and his story of achievement and survival is inspiring. His Cuban roots make for a fascinating historical backdrop explaining how he was crafted into a man with something to prove. His Catholic faith, while meaningful, appears to have furthered his extreme tendencies. Still, the effect resulted in a man who won both the Boston and New York Marathons to become a legend in the world of running.

14 Minutes is a reflective look not only at his life as a runner but also at the changes that have come over sport in these past few decades. Alberto is a key figure who stands as a stark reminder of what runners used to be. In his most recent job working for Nike, he has become an advocate for the evolution of the modern athlete. He is helping to cut away the jagged edges of running leaving only the pure essence of a human in flight. If he can save at least one young runner from the mistakes that he had made, the entire journey will have been worth the struggle.

Note: The reason I gave it only three stars was based on the drab writing style, not the content.
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