Customer Review

80 of 81 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very odd book, 23 Sept. 2004
This review is from: The Lance Armstrong Performance Program (Rodale): The training, strengthening and eating plan behind the world's greatest cycling victory (Paperback)
This is a very odd book, which appears to have no clear idea which readership it aims to address. On the one hand, the central appeal is meant to be the "Lance Armstrong performance programme" for greater fitness and better riding. This involves a seven week programme which assumes the reader will ride every single day over this period. It is reasonable to say that if you're interested in following this plan, you're a fairly committed and probably quite hard core rider.
And yet, on the other hand, the programme occupies only a few short pages while there is seemingly endless filler in which one learns what a clipless peddle is, how a crash helmet can aid safety and why cyclists need to drink fluids. All of which is delivered in a prose style akin to that in a children's book.
So is it for hard core club riders; or beginners of seemingly low intelligence?
We're told that it's good to keep a bike clean; that roads are more slippery when wet and that metal drain covers and the like are even more slippery after rainfall; that it's important to keep warm in very cold weather and avoid getting dehydrated when it's very hot. And so on and so on. Mind numbingly dull padding around what is essentially a magazine article dressed up as a book.
It's also badly put together. The drop out boxes headed "What would Lance do?" contain short pieces supposedly written by the great man himself but quite clearly ghosted and again written in that awful patronising style. At times one is left thinking it has been written by a committee of authors, with no one bothering to read through the whole book or apply any editorial control. So, on the one hand we're told (two or three times) that Lance goes out training late morning (11:45 am is stated at one point) to allow him to consume and digest enough food before hitting the road and that he then rides through lunchtime, eating his late in the afternoon while riding. But then we're told he goes out early in the morning, in order to avoid the sun.
I don't especially care which is correct but I do resent such sloppy fodder. Similarly, we're told the same thing, over and over again, as each chapter appears to be written separately, with no one taking the time to join the dots and eliminate the unnecessary duplications and contradictions.
Lance is an amazing athlete and a terrific lighthouse for cancer sufferers around the world. But this is a shoddy piece of work which exploits his name and those who buy it.
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 19 Feb 2009 13:05:02 GMT
M. J. Eales says:
Great review spot on!

In reply to an earlier post on 31 May 2010 14:10:39 BDT
Julia Flyte says:
I agree - terrific review.
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