This book is both a lesson in true grit and determination, but its goal is one that is attainable. Andy isn't a sporting superstar, he holds down a 9-5 job and all the pressures that go with it; he isn't blessed with speed and talent; there are no multi-million pound sponsorship deals; yet this remarkable "common man" is inspiring in a way that some of today's sporting superstars have forgotten how to be. You wouldn't recognize Andy in the street, yet his story provides valuable lessons to us all: "Never give up" and "Anything is possible." Can't Swim, Can't Ride, Can't Run follows Andy Holgate's epic journey from being an overweight librarian to an Ironman triathlete. Before he could even begin the rollercoaster ride which amassed more punctures than Andy cares to remember, this would-be Superman had first to buy a second-hand bike and take swimming lessons. Along the way, he ended up in hospital, dealt with family crises, encountered crocodiles and deadly amoebas, and persuaded his friends that doing an Ironman event is what normal people do on their stag weekend. This is the inspirational, amusing and moving story of how one normal bloke learnt how to fall off a bike and not injure himself, to run a marathon despite two dodgy knees, and most importantly how not to drown.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This was an OK read. The author sounds like a decent enough guy, but there is nothing that outstanding about his story or experience that merits a book. The writting itself is not great. It reads more like a bunch of diary or blog entries strung together to make a book, which is what I suspect he did.
People think big when they are kids, they dream of doing great things but then along the way many give up on those dreams. Many cast off their dreams deriding them as fantasies born of unrealistic expectations. A pre-mid life analyses of one's accomplishments has developed into a growing wave that is pushing many 30 year old wanna be's back into the world of sports. Go to most any Mountain Bike race, trail run, BMX race or even Triathlon and some of the largest classes fall between 35 and 45 years old.
Andy Holgate's memoir of rediscovery through the triathlon contests is a commentary on a whole generation who are challenging the limitations of sedentary identities. Along the way he finds others who are also seeking to expand their sense of self and embrace a community bonded by determination and pain. As a member of this generation only a few years older than Andy, I have been touched by his story. I'm already looking into the specifics of my local triathlon. Only when we...
I'm a bit torn on this one.
I enjoyed the book, but I think I particularly enjoyed it because I'm a Brit and could understand and empathise (yes British spelling) with some of Andy's self depreciating wit. I think if you miss some of that you'd maybe wonder at times what's going on and perhaps knock a mark off.
Andy's writing style at times does sometimes need a bit of polish. He's doesn't have a Dean Karnazes like ability to draw you into amazing adventures in the desert or Antarctica. I mean that in the nicest possible way, and he makes the most of his trials and tribulations (so to speak), but he probably wouldn't mind me saying that he's a librarian training in often rain-soaked Lancashire - again things I could relate to in a way and which if you couldn't then I'm not sure the book would hold your attention as much.
Similar to Karnazes' book and pretty much most others of the genre, you're not going to get training tips or pointers. The book...
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