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Running to the Edge

A Band of Misfits and the Guru Who Unlocked the Secrets of Speed
Narrated by: René Ruiz
Length: 11 hrs and 26 mins
5 out of 5 stars (37 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Visionary American running coach Bob Larsen assembled a mismatched team of elite California runners...the start of his decades-long quest for championships, Olympic glory, and pursuit of "the epic run."

In the dusty hills above San Diego, Bob Larsen became America's greatest running coach. Starting with a ragtag group of high school cross country and track runners, Larsen set out on a decades-long quest to find the secret of running impossibly fast, for longer distances than anyone thought possible. Himself a former farm boy who fell into his track career by accident, Larsen worked through coaching high school, junior college, and college, coaxing talented runners away from more traditional sports as the running craze was in its infancy in the 60s and 70s. On the arid trails and windy roads of California, Larsen relentlessly sought the "secret sauce" of speed and endurance that would catapult American running onto the national stage. 

Running to the Edge is a riveting account of Larsen's journey, and his quest to discover the unorthodox training secrets that would lead American runners (elite and recreational) to breakthroughs never imagined. New York Times Deputy Sports Editor Matthew Futterman interweaves the dramatic stories of Larsen's runners with a fascinating discourse of the science behind human running, as well as a personal running narrative that follows Futterman's own checkered love-affair with the sport. The result is a narrative that will speak to every runner, a story of Larsen's triumphs - from high school cross-country meets to the founding of the cult-favorite 70s running group, the Jamul Toads, from national championships to his long tenure as head coach at UCLA, and from the secret training regimen of world champion athletes like Larsen's protégé, American Meb Keflezighi, to victories at the New York and Boston Marathons as well as the Olympics.

Running to the Edge is a pause-resister...a relentless crusade to run faster, farther.

©2019 Matthew Futterman (P)2019 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"Running To The Edge is at its heart a vivid, fascinating and affectionate portrait of a man who changed the sport of running in America, and of the sport that changed him. Through the story of a pioneer coach, Bob Larsen, Matt Futterman deftly describes both the running boom era of the 1970s and 1980s, and the resurgence of American distance-running talent in the aughts. I can't think of a runner who wouldn't enjoy this book." (Ed Caesar, author of Two Hours: The Quest to Run the Impossible Marathon)

"Packed with valuable knowledge elegantly conveyed, Running to the Edge is an inspiring and eye-opening look into the evolution of the distance running tradition. Matthew Futterman beautifully translates his passion and curiosity for running into a book that speaks to runners of all abilities." (Alexi Pappas, distance runner and star of Tracktown)

"Running to the Edge reveals the untold history of how a determined coach and his motley crew of underdogs practically defibrillated US distance running. It is at once a beautiful meditation on effort and a tale as captivating and suspenseful as a great race." (David Epstein, New York Times best-selling author of The Sports Gene)  

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running

crazy how fun it was to read about Bob Larson. love his idea of pushing it to the edge!

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Great listen - even if you’re not a runner

It’s all about having the courage to think differently. And, having the perseverance to endure the inevitable struggles. If you are a runner, this is a must listen.

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Inspiring!

Loved hearing about overcoming the odds and the perseverance of all of the athletes and pushing yourself past the point you think you can go.

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a true pioneer

less of an autography, more of an appreciation of an era. distance running in the US was on the brink of insignificance. Bob brought it back

0 of 1 people found this review helpful