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Gold Rush [Paperback]

Michael Johnson
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
RRP: 8.99
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Book Description

5 July 2012

'Elite athletes aren't born. They're made.'
Michael Johnson

From a living icon of the Olympic Games – as both an athlete and now as a BBC broadcaster – Gold Rush is a compelling analysis of the fascinating combination of psychological and personal qualities, as well as internal and external factors, that go to create an Olympic champion.

This exciting new book is based on Michael Johnson's own experiences as an iconic four-time Olympic champion, and on the knowledge he has gleaned as a top-class coach and motivational speaker. It also features, uniquely, more than a dozen exclusive and insightful interviews with Olympic legends from across several different sports who between them have claimed more than 50 gold medals over the past 30 years.

In essence, Johnson has assembled his very own Olympic Hall of Fame in assessing the DNA of true champions.
Gold Rush is themed around chapters in which Johnson will discuss each of the key qualities/factors. He expertly feeds in fascinating first-person testimonies from the Olympic legends. In the process he builds up a definitive knowledge bank of expertise and experience from athletes who have been on this fascinating journey, encountered the highs and the lows, but ultimately reached the summit – an Olympic gold medal.

Johnson's interviewees include:
Usain Bolt
Carl Lewis
Sally Gunnell
Seb Coe
Daley Thompson
Cathy Freeman
Ian Thorpe
Michael Phelps
Rebecca Adlington
Chris Hoy
Steve Redgrave
Matthew Pinsent
Lennox Lewis
Michael Jordan


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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: HarperSport (5 July 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007411936
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007411931
  • Product Dimensions: 20.1 x 12.7 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 26,729 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Michael Johnson, 43, is one of the most pre-eminent athletes of all time. He has four Olympic and nine World Championship gold medals to his name. At the 1996 Atlanta Games, he won both the 200m and 400m (the only athlete in history to do this at the same Games), and his world record for 200m of 19.32 stood for 12 years until Usain Bolt broke it at the Beijing Games of 2008. He still holds the world record for 400m - 43.18 seconds.

Johnson voluntarily returned his 4x400m relay gold medal from the Sydney Games of 2000 after a team-mate admitted taking performance-enhancing drugs earlier in his career.

Following his retirement, Johnson became a sports pundit with the BBC and has since established himself as one of the most popular and renowned sports broadcasters in the UK. The BBC's coverage of Olympic Games and World and European track-and-field Championships is hinged around his contributions.
He writes a regular column for The Times and owns his own sports training facility, the Michael Johnson Performance Centre, in Texas.
In 2002, he was awarded the Television Pundit of the Year Award by the Royal Television Society. He lives in San Francisco, California.

Product Description

Review

“Essential Reading” The Observer

About the Author

Michael Johnson, 43, is one of the most pre-eminent athletes of all time. He has four Olympic and nine World Championship gold medals to his name. At the 1996 Atlanta Games, he won both the 200m and 400m (the only athlete in history to do this at the same Games), and his world record for 200m of 19.32 stood for 12 years until Usain Bolt broke it at the Beijing Games of 2008. He still holds the world record for 400m – 43.18 seconds.
Johnson voluntarily returned his 4x400m relay gold medal from the Sydney Games of 2000 after a team-mate admitted taking performance-enhancing drugs earlier in his career.
Following his retirement, Johnson became a sports pundit with the BBC and has since established himself as one of the most popular and renowned sports broadcasters in the UK. The BBC's coverage of Olympic Games and World and European track-and-field Championships is hinged around his contributions.
He writes a regular column for The Times and owns his own sports training facility, the Michael Johnson Performance Centre, in Texas.
In 2002, he was awarded the Television Pundit of the Year Award by the Royal Television Society.
He lives in San Francisco, California.


Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The greatest! 6 Nov 2011
By P. T. Harries VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Michael Johnson is one of the greatest Olympian athletes of all time and makes sure that we know it. He talks of his trials & tribulations, his analyses of triumphs & failures, seasons the accounts with interjections from other greats, together with his opinions of them and makes mention of his business developing athletes and sports people generally.

It is interesting, without being exciting. Very like the man himself, when seen on TV commentating on athletics events, his delivery is measured and positive and seldom goes over the top. His fervour is confined to a limited number of topics, which include his hatred of drugs and his amazement at the abilities of Usain Bolt, his successor as the greatest sprinter of all time, while managing to have fun as well!

Mr Johnson has a soft spot for the UK and regards himself as an honorary Brit; which is - to most of us - as nice a compliment as you can get. His book is a very useful technical treatise for any aspiring athlete or administrator; both these categories will find the content fascinating. The reader of (auto)biographies will also enjoy an insight into how those in that elite bracket of athleticism work (and I mean WORK) their way to the top.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great athelete but could write more succintly 1 Jan 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I enjoyed this book but was left with the feeling that, whilst there is no question on Johnson's ability on the track, his writing can seem repetitive. I found this particularly marked during the middle of the book in the chapter about mind games. It is good to know that MJ is as tough in his head as he is on the track, but I don't need reminding throughout the book that his goal is to win. He is one serious dude and it is nice to see that many of the atheletes that MJ respects are British and to read of the back-room tactics that you don't see on the TV or track. Whatever you think about MJ, we need people like him to uphold the values of sport and I take my hat off to him concerning his no tolerance of drugs.

I recommend that you buy it, but skip the winning mantra bits that are ever-present and make it a little tough going (Editor, where were you with your red marker strike-throughs?)
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars They are the Champions 6 Aug 2012
By Quicksilver TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
With Great Britain taking three golds in the Olympic Stadium this weekend, there could hardly have been a better time to be reading Michael Johnson's Gold Rush. As one the greatest Olympians of all time he is ideally placed to offer an insight into what makes an Olympic champion.

The short answer is talent and hard work. For this book Johnson draws on his own experience and interviews with other great Olympic gold medallists. Usain Bolt, Nadia Commenic and Ian Thorpe all contribute, as do British legends Chris Hoy, Steve Redgrave and Rebecca Addlington.

Perhaps the best thing about this book, is that as you read, you can hear Johnson's authoritative baritone telling you his experiences. The calm and unsensational delivery that makes him such an assured pundit on television, sets the tone for the book. Johnson is a man who knows about being an elite athlete.

The book's opening chapters deal mainly with Johnson's early career and the trials and tribulations up until he won double gold in Atlanta. After that he goes on to talk about remaining focused, coping with the pressures of fame and the temptations of performance enhancing substances (and his abhorrence of them).

The book does have a flaw, and it's one that mirrors elite sport. It's repetitive. Much as athlete training consists of endless repeats of training routines, Johnson's book repeats the same mantras over and over again. Focus, strategy, execute, these words turn up again and again. We hear endlessly about Michael's training programmes, and frankly they are only interesting to read about once.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By G. J. Oxley TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
If you weren't already aware, the Olympic Games take place in London in 2012. This promises two things in the publishing world: i) there will be the usual rush by publishers to pump out books with an Olympic theme; ii) because they're being held on home soil, multiply the usual number of volumes by three.

This early entry - on what it takes to make an Olympic champion - comes from one of the greatest Olympians of all: Texan, Michael Johnson.

I would contend that Michael Johnson is not only the most articulate and intelligent broadcaster on athletics in the UK, he's the most articulate and intelligent of any sports broadcaster in this country, period. So, then `Gold Rush' should be very good - and indeed, largely it is.

In this book, he shares his own experiences and philosophy on what worked for him - identifying natural ability, hard work, focus, physical conditioning and the right mental attitude among other key factors. Oh, and of course, the help of a great coach. He has also spoken at length to, and supplies quotes from, a dozen other Great Olympians to provide examples on how they achieved greatness. Naturally, as an `adopted Brit' and mindful of his target audience, a good half of these athletes are British.

Much of 'Gold Rush' naturally concentrates on Michael's own brilliant career. He explains how food poisoning cost him the 200m gold medal at the Barcelona Olympics, and gives us the inside story behind THOSE famous gold running spikes. He also mentions that while he was perceived by other athletes and the media as stand-offish, he was merely mentally preparing himself for his races.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Wish it had been longer!
Published 1 month ago by Susan Riddell
4.0 out of 5 stars Very enjoyable and an easy read
Not quite the same as "slaying the Dragon", but still a good insight into what it takes to become an aolympic Champion, with interesting interviews with lots of British... Read more
Published 6 months ago by k t hope
5.0 out of 5 stars Gold
Michael Johnson writes with the incisive precision and intellect we have come to expect from this charming laid back American superathlete. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Christina
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding book
A thoroughly enjoyable book, which offers a fascinating insight on what it takes to win as a professional athlete. Read more
Published 12 months ago by brjos
4.0 out of 5 stars Insight
This book gives an interesting insight into the life and approach of an elite athlete. It clearly demonstrates that success is due to hard work and consistent effort rather than a... Read more
Published 18 months ago by Alison
4.0 out of 5 stars Worth A Punt
If you are hoping for a warts-and-all autobiography from Michael Johnson, you're going to be disappointed (there's a solitary mention of having dated supermodel Tyra Banks, for... Read more
Published 20 months ago by Hair Bear
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book for althletics fans
If you enjoyed the Olympics and want to know more about the athletes, then this is the book for you.
Michael Johnson is one of the greatest sprinters of all time. Read more
Published 22 months ago by Mikeoxo
4.0 out of 5 stars Gold Rush
A really good read, concise and inspirational from a man who really knows what he is talking about - 'been there done that' with no messing about. Give it a read, it's worth it.
Published 22 months ago by adirunner
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating
As a non-athlete, who has never run or competed in sport, I found this book really interesting. I was a little worried when Michael Johnson started talking about the technical... Read more
Published on 23 Aug 2012 by rachelcreative
3.0 out of 5 stars More sports oriented
Found this to be more suitable for a sportsperson, rather than for the layman.
Was expecting bit more biography and not training related matters.
Published on 13 Aug 2012 by Bollo
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