Friday, January 13, 2006

Following the Flame

A novel by Greg Lautenslager, chronicling the story of an ambitious young runner who will do whatever it takes to achieve his goal of making the U.S Olympic team, including (in no particular order): working as a call taker in the sports department of his hometown newspaper, moving to Eugene, OR for a while, eventually ending up back home, all the while trying to see how fast he can run.

No, its not an early release of my future autobiography.

I ordered this book on Hodgie's recommendation, knowing nothing about the author or his running/writing background. Well, about 1/2 way through the novel I had to do a double-take and re-read parts of the last few chapters to make sure I didn't miss seeing my name in there somewhere. While not perfect parallels, the similarities between Greg's story and my current situation are eerily similar. I even had a few of my coworkers at the T & G read a couple of paragraphs and they literally laughed out loud. It was comforting, in a way.

Hopefully, I can continue to author my own real-life running story and cap it off with an equally successful ending. As they say, "its the journey that matters, not the destination", so stay tuned.

With all that being said, buy the book. It's kinda lengthy, a bit slow going early on, but a good read nonetheless for the aspiring runner. I wouldn't quite call it the second coming of Once A Runner, but it serves to show how a little dream, a big goal and a lot of hard work can go a long way.

Speaking of books worth giving a read...I'm almost done with Lance Armstrong's War by Daniel Coyle. It's a quick and interesting read with some good insight into Lance, Team Postal, the Tour de France and cycling in general, if you're into that kinda thing. Also, not to long ago I finished Mind Gym: An Athletes Guide to Inner Excellence, by Gary Mack. Normally, I shy away from these motivational self-help guides, frankly because I find most of them pretty useless, but this little book was very well written and aimed at the serious athlete. Mack does a nice job offering real world examples as well as some mental exercises that will help you to get your head in the right place. Plus, it got two thumbs up from my pal KG, so give it a look!

(For the record, I own all three of the above-mentioned books and didn't make 47 trips to Barnes & Noble to finish reading them in installments for free. Not that anyone really cares, but just to silence the haters out there. If it's worth keeping on my bookshelf, I'll gladly fork over the dough. Simple as that.)

And that just about wraps things up for today. I'm off to visit my pal Mr. McKeon in Brighton before heading into Reggie for a workout with my 'mates. Catch ya on the flipside.

Quote of the day:

To achieve the impossible, it is precisely the unthinkable that must be thought.
Tom Robbins

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

that's your life story in a nutshell. wouldn't it have been funny if the author started out wanting to play professional basketball?


oh, by the way, i found your blog :-P