Your Garage Luxury Beauty Best Books of the Month STEM nav_sap_plcc_ascpsc Samsung S8 Launch Limited time offer Wickedly Prime Handmade Mother's Day Gifts hgg17 Book House Cleaning whiteprincess whiteprincess whiteprincess  Introducing Echo Look Starting at $89.99 Kindle Oasis Trade it in. Fund the next. National Bike Month on Amazon disgotg_gno_17

Your rating(Clear)Rate this item

There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

Showing 1-10 of 31 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 67 reviews
on November 15, 2012
Yes, this is a must read for everyone... the closet walker, the one who wants to lose a few pounds..but doesn't want to admit it... for the seasoned runner, to remind them, speed is not everything, for some it's the journey... for the first marathoner, so that they're inspired by the event, and not dejected by their performance. Read it... It'll make everyone feel like a runner...It's a light hearterd, funny book that had me in splits... and at many points in the book, I felt like he was writing about me! You go John!
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on March 17, 2012
I wanted to love this book as much as I do his other books and his long-running articles in Runner's World magazine. I wanted it so badly I downloaded it right to my Kindle. Sadly it was a disappointment. While I normally laughed out loud from reading his Penguin Tales, I think there was only one line in this whole book that make me laugh like that. Seemed a bit thin, and as others have said would have been a better article than a book. He is an inspiration to me and many other "adult onset athletes" but I think maybe you'd be better off getting this when it hits your library.
0Comment| 4 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on August 18, 2011
I really enjoy John Bingham's books, having read a number of them. I particularly liked this one as I'm an accidental runner at 40 after having been an athlete for almost all of my life. I'm also a back of the pack runner and find no shame in it. After somebody has to finish after the faster runners. Great job John. Looking forward to more books from you!!
0Comment| 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on May 13, 2013
The author contradicts himself throughout the book. On one side he keep saying that running is only about your own mind and body, but on the other hand he loves competing against others in as many races as he can!
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on March 1, 2013
The title of my review is maybe a bit harsh, but I got frustrated with this book. Here are the negatives in my view:

1. I was looking for an answer to a question posed by the author countless times. He asks "why do I run?" He doesn't have a good answer. In one of the last sentences of the book the author writes: "...Running has taught me how to live. I have learned, with my own two feet, the meaning of triumph and failure, and the fleeting nature of both." Those words have the potential to be powerful and wise, but the book contains relatively few illustrations of triumphs and failures. It contains a few, but the details are scant. The triumphs appear to include competing with another runner for last place in a marathon, or simply completing a race. The failures include not training well enough for a race...or something like that. The author writes many sentences throughout the book that sound wise, but after thinking about them I wonder what exactly he is meaning to say. The book is full of a hollow wisdom that leaves me unfulfilled.

2. Related to my point above, there is a vagueness about the author's pre-athlete life. He says he was overweight. OK, so how much? How quickly did he lose weight after starting to run? He said he used to smoke 3 packs a day, but then he quit. It's really very hard to quit smoking, so the reader wants to know more about how he accomplished this.

3. I think the author is smart and funny, but his writing style is barely at the college level (I teach college students, so I should know). There are paragraphs that are just stuck in between other paragraphs with no particular eye for where each chapter is going. Upon finishing a chapter I would often wonder what the main ideas were supposed to be. The points he was trying to make got repetitive; it seemed like he knew he wasn't being articulate and so he kept trying to make the same points using different words.

4. I bought this book because, like the author, I discovered an athleticism in my mid 30s that I had not experienced as a boy or young adult. I felt like the author could teach me some things about running. However, there is little advice given about the actual sport.

There are some good things about the book, too:

1. The first few chapters are about the author's childhood. I could relate to his stories about being the kid with glasses who was always chosen last for school teams during gym time.

2. All his stories throughout the book are fun. I can see him waddling down a neighborhood street as he attempts to run a 5K for the first time. I can imagine the black toenails falling off in his sock, or the closet door jingling with his marathon ribbons and medals. I liked his story about trying to impress a girl by using the heaviest bowling ball. I liked knowing about his lunchtime bike rides.

3. I did learn a little about running, just not enough.

To close, let me say that I really admire the author and how he has transformed his life. He has accomplished much to be proud of, and his story is worthy of a book--just not this one. I am a intermediate-level triathlete training for my first half-marathon (spring 2013) and first half-ironman (summer 2014). I am much more of a swimmer and cyclist than I am a runner, so I don't ever expect to do a full marathon. This authors has...many times over. Thus, my criticisms are about his book and not the man himself.
0Comment| 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on August 18, 2011
I laughed, I cried, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I could identify with so many of John's experiences. While some may view slower runners like myself with disdain, John made me proud to be out there. I run for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and I have seen John speak at many of their events. He is a very entertaining speaker as well as writer. John is an inspiration to many people who never thought they could ever step up to a starting line let alone cross a finish line.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on August 22, 2011
Reading this book brought back memories of my own childhood. The book is easy reading and, in my opinion, more about life than running. I can understand how reading this book could make a light bulb go off in the back of your head that says Hey, if John can do it, so can I.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on August 18, 2011
This is the best read. I have laughed out loud at times. I also can feel what he is going through.
It is hard to put down but I try so I can at least keep reading it for a few days.
Worth every penny and one I will come back to.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on February 24, 2013
I'm closing rapidly on 40 myself, and i've been addicted to running for 7 years. It started out more or less like in this book. It's just what I needed among the heaps of other books. This a fantastic story full of humour and charm, that reminds us of the importance of having fun, of finding joy. It's a book i'll read several times as it gives me a boost every time!
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 28, 2013
I did like this book, but to me, it seemed a little repetitive, and even repetitive from The Courage to Start. John Bingham has definitely been an inspiration for my running, as a penguin, but I could have skipped this one.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse