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Finding Ultra: Rejecting Middle Age, Becoming One of the World's Fittest Men, and Discovering Myself Paperback – 31 May 2013

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Product details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Three Rivers Press; Reprint edition (31 May 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307952207
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307952202
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 1.6 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (91 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 10,995 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By D. Nicklin on 25 July 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Many people seem to critisise the book because of constant references to his Vitamix blender and his blend of special vegan supplements. This is a pity. I think it should be taken for what it is which is or was for me a truely inspirational and enjoyable read. I write this days before the start of the 2012 Olympics. The news over the last few days has been filled with violence and all that is broken with humanity. Yet this provided the perfect escape. The chance to indulge my imagination in positive inspirational fetes where someone does something the vast majority on the planet consider impossible. It just goes to show how amazing the body and mind are. For that I can excuse the product placement and the constant promoting of a vegan diet. As far as the author is concerned these are things that are the corner stone of his metamorphosis and therefore he has every right to be evangelical about it.

The great thing about read like this is their ability to open ones mind to new things. He like me, doesn't like the term vegan as for the vast majority of meat eaters it has massively negative connotations. By the end of the book I had developed a completely new view of veganism as well as a very healthy respect for it. Will I give up my rare steaks? Don't know - hard to imagine but I might be tempted to see what happens for 30 days say.

I like the style of the book. I never got bored reading it, in fact once he starts telling the story of his ultra triathlons and his adventures doing the EPIC5 challenge, I couldn't put it down. As a formerly fat middle aged bloke myslef who suddenly discovered fitness late in life I can really identify with the guy.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Andy Flett on 25 Sept. 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've read a number of self development books and made tweaks along the way that have made a small difference here and there. But none like Finding Ultra. About 4 months before I read this book I'd embarked on a gluten free diet and a move towards vegetarianism. Why? I generally felt rubbish the way I was eating and couldn't shift the last stone of extra weight having been a runner for over 2 years but never achieved the results I knew I was capable of. Finding Ultra answered a lot of questions I had about reaching the next level, how can I improve my performance and everyday well being. I can honestly say in all my 39 years I haven't felt better now I've shifted to a predominantly plant based diet, lost the weight I needed to lose and found energy I never had before. Rich's story from college swimming success through alcoholism to ultra marathon champion is mind boggling. The book now resides in my kitchen, not the book shelf as it's packed full of great training, food & nutrition tips I'm constantly referring back to.

This is a must read for anyone looking for inspiration to get fit and healthy. It's never too late, age or weight don't matter this will give you the will to succeed.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This guy goes from fat alcoholic to very quickly doing ultraman and back-to-back ironmans and getting elite level finish times. This justifies the accolades of "stunning" and "amazing".

Maybe this is just my (very) jealous self talking but I didn't find it inspirational. This guy has either or all - a stupendous physiology, a robotic mastery of his mind and the "I don't wanna run/bike/swim/walk do anything today" voice, a brilliant coach or a ton of money to ease some of the challenges. Anyway, not much of his athletic journey (or his life in general) chimes with mine and I couldn't really relate to it or to him. He is not my hero; I view him as a creature from another planet.

One insightful little tidbit is how his coach makes him do weeks and weeks firmly in HR zone 2, jogging at a crawl if needs be. Note to self.

But if anything it's put me off a bit - if there are people who can pull that out of the hat then I should swap my sidis for slippers. His accomplishments are a wide eyed wow.

What was interesting is his diet. He goes vegan but very professionally and credibly. My own attempts at veganism were in student days when I just didn't do it even remotely properly. Mine was a silly diet of exclusion whereas his is a diet of variety and inclusion. I'd written it off but I am now re-inspired to become an "improved vegetarian". I have been hearing a lot lately about other elite endurance athletes (e.g. Chrissy Wellington) swearing by their veganism.

There is some product placement but I don't mind that and he's up front about it. I like getting tips and I use the web to validate.

His reformed alcoholic journey could be inspiring.
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By nathang on 24 May 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Overall I enjoyed this book and would recommend however I understand how it may not appeal to everyone.

The book is essentially split into 2 parts: the first describes the authors early life and his descent into alcoholism whilst the second covers how he took on the challenge of an ultraman triathlon and his conversion to a plant based diet.

I found the first part of the book slightly superficial and found myself skim reading some sections. Note that i work as a therapist so perhaps would want something more "confessional" than the average reader of this type of book.

The sections of his book covering the training and preparation fro ultraman were far more interesting and enjoyable leading up to the challenge of 5 Ironman in 5 days!

I find myself disagreeing with those reviewers who feel the author is over evangelic about the vegan diet. This lifestyle is clearly an important part of Rich Roll's conversion from alcoholic to Endurance athlete and his coverage of the topic seems well researched. there is plenty of information for anyone wanting to try this for themselves.

Overall if you like this kind of book you will probably enjoy this and find plenty of inspiration for your own challenges
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