- Hardcover: 288 pages
- Publisher: Putnam Adult; 1 edition (May 22, 2000)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0399146113
- ISBN-13: 978-0399146114
- Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.2 x 9.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (911 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #199,978 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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It's Not about the Bike: My Journey Back to Life Hardcover – May 22, 2000
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People around the world have found inspiration in the story of Lance Armstrong--a world-class athlete nearly struck down by cancer, only to recover and win the Tour de France, the multiday bicycle race famous for its grueling intensity. Armstrong is a thoroughgoing Texan jock, and the changes brought to his life by his illness are startling and powerful, but he's just not interested in wearing a hero suit. While his vocabulary is a bit on the he-man side (highest compliment to his wife: "she's a stud"), his actions will melt the most hard-bitten souls: a cancer foundation and benefit bike ride, his astonishing commitment to training that got him past countless hurdles, loyalty to the people and corporations that never gave up on him. There's serious medical detail here, which may not be for the faint of heart; from chemo to surgical procedures to his wife's in vitro fertilization, you won't be spared a single x-ray, IV drip, or unfortunate side effect. Athletes and coaches everywhere will benefit from the same extraordinary detail provided about his training sessions--every aching tendon, every rainy afternoon, and every small triumph during his long recovery is here in living color. It's Not About the Bike is the perfect title for this book about life, death, illness, family, setbacks, and triumphs, but not especially about the bike. --Jill Lightner
From Publishers Weekly
In 1996, young cycling phenom Armstrong discovered he had testicular cancer. In 1999, he won the Tour de France. Now he's a grateful husband, a new fatherAand a memoirist: with pluck, humility and verve, this volume covers his early life, his rise through the endurance sport world and his medical difficulties. Cancer "was like being run off the road by a truck, and I've got the scars to prove it," Armstrong declares. Earlier scars, he explains, came from a stepfather he casts as unworthy; early rewards, from his hardworking mother and from the triathlons and national bike races Armstrong won as a Texas teen. "The real racing action was over in Europe": after covering that, Armstrong and Jenkins (Men Will Be Boys, with Pat Summit, etc.) ascend to the scarier challenges of diagnoses and surgeries. As he gets worse, then better, Armstrong describes the affections of his racing friends and of the professionals who cared for him. Armstrong is honest and delightful on his relationship to wife Kristin (Kik), and goes into surprising detail about the technology that let them have a child. The memoir concludes with Armstrong's French victory and the birth of their son. The book features a disarming and spotless prose style, one far above par for sports memoirs. Bicycle-racing fans will enjoy the troves of inside information and the accounts of competitions, but Armstrong has set his sights on a wider meaning and readership: "When I was sick I saw more beauty and triumph and truth in a single day than I ever did in a bike race." Agent, Esther Newberg. First serial to Vanity Fair; BOMC main selection; foreign rights sold in the U.K., Australia, France, Germany, Holland and Japan. (May 22)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Top Customer Reviews
This sincerely is an amazing story. I just wish I could have read it when I was going through my intense radiation treatments in my recovery, because I feel it would have made things easier for me. In his book, Armstong brings this disease into the public view, and allows people to see that it truly doesn't have to be a part of death, but, in fact, a part of life.
There are many stories within the book. His childhood, his attitudes towards his father figures, his early racing career, his battle with cancer, the stuggle to get back on top of his game, his love life, and, his extemely personal march towards fatherhood. Each and every one of these minor stories gives an overall inspirational journey into Lance Armstrong's remarkable life.
The writing is nicely detailed and allows for a good, easy-flowing read. The racing-scenes are action-packed, and make you feel as if you are right there on the bike with him. Armstong tells his tale using candid language and relates his stories of life with honesty and a pure heart. This book is a true inspiration to anyone. Please read this book. You cannot go wrong.
When I most recently saw media coverage of Lance's story and book, I was angry. I didn't want the public to believe that Cancer had a hollywood ending if you work hard and don't give up. There's nothing hollywood about Cancer and I resented the attention Lance was receiving. Then, I read the book.
IT'S REAL. Through the wonderfully constructed words of Sally Jenkins, and the raw, honest sentiments of Lance Armstrong, this book tells it like it is. Lance Armstrong is just like anyone else who happens to be diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. He is not a hero. He is not superhuman. He is human. And, in this book, he doesn't pretend to be anything but that.
This book takes you through all of the emotions of being a cancer patient; fear, sadness, anger, resentment, pity, hope, and so on. Though every patient is different, Lance's feelings echo those of myself and countless others who are in the survivor's club.
As a marathoner, I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Lance's cycling career. However, you don't have to be an athlete to appreciate his incredible drive, determination and accomplishments on a bike.
His story both on and off the bike is truly inspirational.
This book is for cancer patients and survivors. It is for their families and friends, who just can't fully understand what it is like to endure the physical and emotional challenges of the disease. It is for athletes of all skill levels, shapes and sizes. And, it is for ANYONE who needs a little perspective on just how precious life really is and what's important.
Thanks for reading.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Lance is a true fighter no matter what is in front of him and still has the weakness of a human being , as we all have .Published 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
Mr. Armstrong is an arrogant man who seem to think his success is all his doing and no one else's.Published 8 months ago by Karen Danner