As he did so masterfully in his New York Times best seller The Gatekeepers, Jacques Steinberg creates a compelling portrait of people obsessed with reaching a life-defining goal. In this instance, the target is an Ironman triathlon---a 2.4-mile open-water swim followed by a 112-mile bike ride, then finally a 26-mile marathon run, all of which must be completed in no more than 17 hours. Steinberg focuses not on the professional who live off the prize money and sponsorships, but on a handful of triathletes who regard the sport as a hobby.
Vividly capturing the grueling preparation, the suspense of completing each event of the triathlon, and the spectacular feats of human endurance, Steinberg plumbs the physical and emotional toll as well as the psychological payoff of the participants of the Ford Ironman Arizona 2009. His You Are an Ironman is both a riveting sports narrative and a fascinating, behind-the-scenes study of what makes these athletes keep going.
©2011 Jacques Steinberg (P)2011 Tantor
"Anyone dreaming of completing a triathlon or just seeking to get off the couch and into better shape will find inspiration here." (Kirkus)
It was very motivational.
It was great at motivating me to get off my booty and start moving again. WARNING: Don't listen to if you want to be a couch potato!
The stories in this book are as real life and varied as you can get. It was a fun listen that was easy to get into. It made me feel that the goal of an ironman is possible even for those of us with busy lives and starting points wrt our training. If the Ironman highlight videos on youtube have captured your attention - this listen is for you!
Kirby's reading makes this very personal. His use of tone, inflection and personal flare for speaking like the characters in the book was a highlight.
The entire last chapter of walking through raceday with each of the charaters was a delight. Talk of the comraderie shown on the course and personal moments each experienced definitely changed my view of what racing in an ironman could be - for the better!
I listened to this book while training for a marathon so I had lots of miles to fill. I found it to be enjoyable and inspiring. It is not a "how to" guide for training for an Ironman -- instead it is a collection of stories about regular people who, for whatever reason, decide to train and participate in the Ironman Arizona 2009 race. On occasion it because a little confusing remembering which person was which (there were about 8) when starting a new chapter, but if I kept listening I always figured it out.
Stories are very personal and personable -- I had no problem listening to up to 2 hours while running. I did listen to it on 1 1/2 speed (as I do all audiobooks) because I find that more interesting.
Great book about fairly ordinary people of various ages that have jobs, kids, lives, etc. but decide to pursue competing in an Ironman race. This is the best fitness bio I have read to date. It motivates me to keep working out since these people aren't so different than me. Really enjoyed it.
ZEN. LDS. GTD. FTW.
Another narrator. It's a subjective thing, but I couldn't stand the narrators voice, even after repeated tries. It was too passive and sort of whiny.
More emotion and less of a documentary angle.
No. Kirby's style and tone isn't a match for my ears.
Frustration because of the laid-back pacing of the story and Kirby's voice.
This audiobook has been the biggest disappointment yet.
I liked it because I don't seem to have a lot of time to sit down and read. It probably would have taken me months to finish the print version.
No favorite. All of the athletes were truly amazing.
The narration was great. He kept me wanting to hear more. I was sad when the book ended.
I would keep the book title as the tag line. You are an Ironman.
I would love to have more inspirational "true life" books to choose from. This book was the best I have heard/read in a very long time.
I have been listening to a lot of inspirational endurance athlete type books while training for a marathon, and honestly this is not one of the best. There is a fascinating intro about the history of the Ironman, but then it drags into a very long and boring stretch (the vast majority of the book) of basically just doing through the training logs of the participants, and reading their blogs (which in turn are just descriptions of their training). Too many characters that are not distinct enough so in audiobook form it is easy to zone out as to whose cold swim or century bike ride you are hearing about. Lots of stories of minor injuries and getting over them which don't really go anywhere. I will say that it does impress upon you the sheer volume of training that an Ironman requires, which blows my marathon training out of the water.
For this type of book I would greatly recommend Born to Run, Eat and Run or Finding Ultra before this book.
Readers are leaders. Who would pass up the opportunity to learn something every day?
I'd listen to it again whenever I need that extra boost of motivation to get through anything requiring endurance.
The most memorable moment of You Are an Ironman were when I heard the announcer call each person the story follows an Ironman.
Hearing about the couple who met and spent quality time over training for the Ironman.
Each person's journey was moving.
Warning: May convince you to start training for 140.6 miles too ;)
Short and sweet reviews, Allentown pa
good stories by athletes, i appreciated that they were from all walks of life. the narrator sounded like he was going to fall asleep reading
I am also aspiring to complete an Ironman, in 2013, and I'm also a 'late bloomer' and a weekend warrior! Still... wasn't sure what to expect with these stories. Once started...couldn't stop listening. Excellent job by the narrator and compelling stories all around. As stated, not a training manual but clearly some tidbits are in there about training, mind control and racing strategies - to add to our own plans. Clearly worth the listen!
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