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The Runner's Guide to the Meaning of Life Turtleback – November 17, 2007
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From the Inside Flap
The Runner's Guide to the Meaning of Life
What 35 Years of Running Has Taught Me about Winning, Losing, Happiness, Humility, and the Human Heart
On Finding Your Path
"I have learned that there is no failure in running, or in life, as long as you keep moving. It's not about speed and gold medals. It's about refusing to be stopped. You might find that one particular direction proves difficult, but there are many directions on a compass. Infinite, in fact. As long as you keep searching, you'll find your way."
"Sometimes my main reason for running is simply to see where my brain will go while my body is meandering though the local trails or roadways. It can never be predicted, and it's always a surprise."
On The Need For Traditions
"In a world that perpetually moves faster, never slower, we need all the anchoring points we can find. Chaos erupts spontaneously in our spinning lives. It's the center of the wheel that we need to focus on more often."
On Bouncing Back
"Losing isn't contagious. It's not a fatal condition, and it's not forever. It's more like a cold that makes you miserable for a week but then goes away, and you're fine."
"When in the mountains enjoy the mountain scenery. Nobody achieves his goal without having some fun along the way. Without fun, we'd give up long before the finish line. If there's any way to make the road easier and enjoyable, I'm all for it."
On Starting Fresh
"Life goes on, day after day, but it also has the ability to reinvent itself, to start over. This is what the seasons show us. We all have marveled at the apple tree's ability to rest through a dark, cold winter, then to grow new leaves in the spring, to blossom again, to bear fruit. We don't often think of our own lives this way, but I think we should."
About the Author
A lifelong runner and running advocate, Amby Burfoot has been executive editor of Runner's World magazine since 1985. In 1968, he won the Boston Marathon, the first American to do so in 11 years. He is the author of The Principles of Running and Runner's World Complete Book of Running.
About the Author
More About the Author
Burfoot has finished the Boston Marathon 20 times, including 2013, 2014, and 2015 (the 50th anniversary of his first Boston in 1965.) He hopes to maintain his mini-streak through 2018, which will be the 50th anniversary of his victory in 1968.
Burfoot has run a smattering of other global marathons, including his personal best, 2:14:29, in the 1968 Fukuoka Marathon in Japan. He has also finished South Africa's famed 54-mile Comrades Marathon on two occasions. He's married to Cristina, a fellow runner-writer, and has two grown children--Daniel and Laura.
He feels lucky to be one of those fortunate few who have managed to combine passion and profession.
Top Customer Reviews
"The Runner's Guide to the Meaning of Life" is another good one.
This book was first published in hardcover in 2000. It's tough to know how much updating was done, but no matter what editing took place, it stands up pretty well on its own.
Burfoot isn't afraid to think about some of the philosophical issues that often come up for runners. For example, why run? That's the first chapter. Burfoot argues that we've always run, we're indeed built to run, as it was a way of gathering food in long-past days. So it's no wonder that so many receive a basic sense of enjoyment.
Burfoot likes a great deal about running. He likes the way that every race has a new starting line, a new chance to prove himself. He likes the chance to take part in traditions. He likes the chance to connect with other people. He likes the way so many show courage merely by taking that first step, let alone the last. He likes the sounds of a run, whether it has the slapping of shoes on to pavement by thousands or the complete quiet of the countryside. He likes that running only requires sneakers, and even that is optional in some cases, as opposed to the long list of equipment needed in other activities.
Runners usually can be split into two categories, the competitors and the rest of us. Luckily for the rest of us, the competitors slow down and join us in the pack eventually.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a Christmas gift to our daughter. So we'll have to get back to you.Published 2 months ago by David Rehage
I enjoyed Amby's insights on the values of running and its impact on our lives. As a former runner and current cross country coach for a high. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Roger
This is another one of those motivational running books ( as opposed to the how to books). I really like this book. I thoroughly enjoy Amby's writing style. Read morePublished 7 months ago by John M. Lahr
This elegant, intimate little book speaks volumes to anyone who has loved being a runner.Published 8 months ago by Bruce J Jones
I am an avid runner who travels regularly and purchased this looking for a good read on a long plane flight. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Dan B
Amby Burfoot was the winner of the 1968 Boston Marathon. He started his athletic life as a bench warmer on his school basketball team. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Christine L. Wodke
A very quick read, but a lackluster one at that. Burfoot's philosophies, while true, are very simple and to an extent common sense. Read morePublished 14 months ago by Joe