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

4.4 out of 5 stars 107 customer reviews

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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 x 1.6 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (107 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 13,171 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

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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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is OK. To give an objective breakdown I'll list what I liked an didn't like about it:

Liked

Its VERY easy to read. The ghost writers clearly did a good job in putting together an inspirational book detailing his adventures, without going into too much detail.
Its quite short.
I suppose its quite an inspirational story. If its all true then Rich should be commended for what he has achieved. Beating alcoholism and becoming as fit as he has.

Didn't like
The book is a massive nod to all his sponsors and the companies he's set up. He goes into detail name checking all his equipment and all the food blends he's made and is marketing. This got a bit tiring but I suppose theses are the things that allow him to do what he does and if I was in his position I'd probably do the same.
A lot of the highs seem to have been elevated and the lows brought down. He was obviously an almost Olympic swimmer well into his college years and the pictures of him at his top weight still show him looking like an athlete. He makes it sound like he was at deaths door before getting healthy but you wonder how much he is using.
He comes across as a bit preachy. Half the book is an appendix of things and don't even bother checking his website, its part TV evangelist and part marketing spin...
I'm not sure about a lot of the science. As mentioned by a lot of people he is massively pushing his lifestyle. Yes this lifestyle clearly works for him and I suppose the reader should use their discretion as this is an interesting beach read....At times it comes across a bit like he is trying to use hard science to convince us of the proven benefits of his lifestyle.

Overall

An enjoyable and easy read.
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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
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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