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Comment: This book has already been loved by someone else. It MIGHT have some wear and tear on the edges, have some markings in it, or be an ex-library book. Over-all it's still a good book at a great price! (if it is supposed to contain a CD or access code, that may be missing)
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The Last Pick: The Boston Marathon Race Director's Road to Success Paperback – April 4, 2006

4.3 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

DAVID J. McGILLIVRAY is race director of the Boston Marathon. He has delivered more than 1,200 motivational speeches and, as president and founder of Dave McGillivray Sports Enterprises Inc. (DMSE), he has raised over $1 million for various charities. He lives in Boston, Massachusetts.

LINDA GLASS FECHTER is a freelance writer who has worked for over 16 years with various charities and athletic organizations.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 260 pages
  • Publisher: Rodale Books; 1st Printing edition (April 4, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1594864225
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594864223
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #399,939 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book was just what the doctor ordered as an antidote to a humdrum winter and a pudgy middle! I found the writing style endearing and Dave McGillivray's achievements to be inspiring. We may not all run across the country, but we can all have goals that challenge us. It's one of those books that you don't want to end...there's a magic to it that makes you feel ageless. I look at my aches and pains in a new way, and when I feel exhausted during a run I think "Well, at least I can stop before the next state...."
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Format: Paperback
For those wondering about the purpose of reviews, "The Last Pick" offers a good lesson.

The cover of the book has the title, the subtitle "The Boston Marathon Race Director's Road to Success," the names of the authors and a picture of David McGillivray. Based on that, it would be easy to expect a book about McGillivray's experiences on the job. "Alberto Salazar one day told me that ..." or "I had to drive Joan Benoit Samuelson 90 miles an hour to get her to the starting line..." were the type of stories that figured to be in here.

Wrong.

It turns out McGillivray has been quite an athlete over the years, particularly in the area of endurance sports. He's run long distances, gone for less-than-quick dips in the pool, etc. This book is filled with stories about his own exploits. It has plenty of interesting portions.

The centerpiece of the book actually is a story that dates back to 1978. McGillivray had the idea to run across the country in order to raise money for the Jimmy Fund, a children's cancer unit in the Boston area. Such runs have become a little more common, if that's the right word, over the years, and they've gotten easier logistically. Cell phones, laptops and e-mail have made communication much more constant. McGillivray made across with an RV that staggered along the roads with him. He's good at describing the physical toll such a run takes along the way, which adds much to the story.

So what has he been doing athletically since then? Plenty. He runs a mile for each year of his life around his birthday, entered triathlons, and even tried to swim the English Channel (bad weather prevented it).
Read more ›
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Format: Paperback
If you are in a mid-life funk, this is the book to read. Dave writes about many of his accompishments as if he were having a conversation with you and in all of his stories there is an important message: MOVE, BELIEVE, and SET GOALS no matter how lofty. I managed to finish one 5k race my entire life and I am just now realizing how important that race was.
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Format: Paperback
I was very surprised at how much McGillivray accomplished in his life. I picked up his book expecting to read about a marathoner and his experience as the race director of the Boston Marathon and got so much more. McGillivray's cross country run, 24hr run, bike and swim and so on are just amazing in and of themselves.

Sometimes his motivation and drive does seem very obsessive compulsive, but it works for him. I was very inspired by everything he's done and the attitude he takes in life.

I must say that at times it did seem like McGillivray was tooting his own horn. I was also annoyed by the small excerpts and quotes that were literally on every other page. Some were legitimate quotes from a newspaper or contemporary runner/athlete, but many were just his family and friends and didn't really add any credence to his biography. The only thing that was useful was to see the words from the horse's mouth, so to speak, just before McGillivray went into a time in his life where that person was.

All in all a very inspiring book. I would definitely recommend.

4 stars.
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Format: Paperback
Great read Dave!

Inspiration from someone who has done some inspiring things. Dave's the real deal. Unlike many of our contemporary self-help prophets Dave's got the resume to back it up. He's unpretentious in his accounts and proves the value of setting goals, pursuing them like mad and then setting new goals until life becomes a happy whirl of accomplishment.

The most outstanding thing I learned, and Dave epitomizes, is the power of giving. If you sow so shall you reap - and look at what is possible! Helping people makes his world and ours a better place and that's his success.

I'll be running your (our) big race again this year - thank you and keep it coming...

Read this book and then buy a copy for someone you love.

Chris Russell
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Format: Paperback
This is a chronicle of Dave's athletic achievements refracted through his wit, everyman's life and New England charm. He perseveres through the same ailments, injuries and woes as the rest of us - but he still pulls "it" off. Dave's vision to raise money and consciousness for great causes is on display here, too. I'm training for some personal goals this year (and for years to come.) I purchased one copy as a gift for a friend (his first "Boston") and a second copy for myself. I'm glad I purchased both.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Starts a bit slowly - just like a good long run - but certainly worth the time and effort as it hits its stride. This man "Dave" is motivational and exceptional in his physical achievements; and he's made most of them up while following his own template. AKA "Don't give Time anything... rather force Time to take from you" and this book follows that philosophy.
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