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Ultramarathon Man: Confessions of an All-Night Runner Paperback – March 2, 2006
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Despite his considerable athleticism, "Karno" argues that the first half of any race is run with one's body, and the second half with the mind. Without delving into excessively touchy-feely territory, he explores "the possibilities of self" as he completes an ultra-marathon in 120-degree heat in Death Valley, and later the first-ever marathon at the South Pole. It's an odd combination: a California surfer dude contemplating how, as Socrates said, "Suffering leads to wisdom." But Karnazes's self-motivation is utterly intriguing, and it's impossible to read this memoir without wanting to go out and run a marathon yourself.--Erica Jorgensen --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
Karnazes refers to himself as an ordinary person with no special talent, who has performed amazing feats simply by dint of high ambition and unwavering determination.
Karnazes' resolve is indisputable. But he underrates his inherent abilities. His book describes various endurance exploits accomplished as a child and youth, as well as the unusually quick progress he made when he seriously took up long distance running as an adult. These are signs of a person who has exceptional natural stamina. Determination (and even diligent training) alone would not be sufficient to produce his results as an endurance athlete.
Karnazes also has rare energy. He writes of frequently running much of the night during the weekends and then spending active days with his family. He says he often gets by on four hours of sleep per night for extended periods. He tells about running for almost 48 hours straight, covering 200 miles, and then devoting several hours to dash about an amusement park with his kids. Most people could not come close to matching his vitality, no matter how resolute they might be.
While Karnazes may consider himself an ordinary person, he asserts that he is accomplishing things that are extraordinary, even unprecedented.Read more ›
Dean's stories of stopping at the 7-11 store or ordering a pizza while running are hilarious and I did not find him to be sexist in anyway, especially since he was defeated by a woman twice in the badwater run. This is a truly inspiring story not only for athletes, but for people in general as Dean clearly displays that running these races is not all about body it's just as much, if not more, about having a strong mind and will. Something that people can apply in their everyday life.
This really was one of the most inspirational and fulfilling books I've read in quite some time.
As others have noted, I lost most of my respect for DK when he started trashing the Boston Marathon when comparing it to the Western States 100. After that, I found it difficult to get past his exaggerations without wondering how much truth there was behind his words.
First, to describe the writing as sophomoric would be an act of kindness. Was there no editor? Every character speaks like the same person talking; and they all sound like a Marine from a really bad B movie. Did someone really say, "The name's Rock. At least that's what my friends call me."? Anyway, everyone in the freaking book talks like that. Everyone!
Second, Karnazes makes each of his running endeavors sound like some kind of holy experience in which he turns out to be the god of running. He details his high school running career -- which was really only one season as a freshman cross country runner. He ran one race with the varsity team, but makes it sound like he saved the team (he obviously came in 5th of the runners on his team).
After the cross country season, he was then going to run track, but the track coach laughed at his statement, "I run with my heart." So he quit and "I didn't run again for fifteen years." Huh? One statement from a coach and he didn't run again for 15 years? He didn't even run cross country again the next season?
Third, all credibility is destroyed again and again. For example, the book shows an elevation profile of the Boston Marathon course versus the Western States 100. The problem is that it's not the Boston profile (which is readily accessible from the marathon's website). Later he states that given the "traditional running adage that you need one week of recover for every mile you race", he'd need 14.5 years rest from one summer of racing.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Being a running enthusiast myself and having followed Dean Karnazes inspiring story of a total life change is a compelling and very interesting read! Read morePublished 2 days ago by Andy Keith
Great stories with enormous passion directly from the Heart of a runner. Dean gives us both an insight and great inspirationPublished 3 days ago by Amazon Customer
Devouring each chapter!!! I've put all else on hold ... till I finish it. A most inspirational piece of work written by a most inspirational man who is responsible for me... Read morePublished 7 days ago by Chrystall A. Karra
What a story. I was a runner, so I thought I would enjoy it. I LOVED it! Runner or not - this book has an appeal that should be for every single person out there. Read morePublished 15 days ago by Lois Raitt
Very easy read and mildly inspiring. Enjoyed reading it very much.Published 2 months ago by ThunderingEarl
Worth reading if you are into running and have a few hours to while away. It's engrossing at points but often wanders into ridiculousness as Karnazes' blatant arrogance rears its... Read morePublished 2 months ago by bigandrew
I am a runner, but not an ultra marathoner. I loved this book and would highly recommend it to any runner even if you just a recreational runner!Published 2 months ago by Marti McDonald