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Long Run: One Man's Attempt to Regain His Athletic Career-And His Life-by Running the New York City Marathon

4.11  ·  Rating details ·  2,658 Ratings  ·  290 Reviews

Matt Long had no chance. He was cycling to the firehouse when a 20-ton bus turned, making an illegal turn, and hit him. Sucked under the chassis, he sustained injuries serious enough to necessitate 40 operations. And then the real recovery began. This veteran marathoner and brave firefighter had faced challenges before, but even he had never experienced such physical and p

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Published October 12th 2010 by Rodale Press, Inc. (first published January 1st 2010)
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Aug 20, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
Arrogant and conceited are words that when finished reading The Long Run you may use to describe Matthew Long. But, to be fair if you are going to make a descriptive list then you must also include strong, fighter, hard worker, spirited and family oriented. The list could probably go on and aside from what I or others may choose to describe Matt Long, there is no escaping that his story is remarkable as well as inspiring. And, to be honest it is just not Matt who you are drawn to in this book, b ...more
Dec 31, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Kate by: Runner's World
I realize this is going to make me sound mean and soul-less but I'm going to say it: I didn't really enjoy this book.

Don't get me wrong, the story is inspiring. I read an excerpt in "Runners World" awhile ago, and I was intrigued. The novel tells the story of Matt Long, a New York firefighter, marathoner, Boston qualifier, 9/11 survivor, and triathlete. One day during the transit strike, he is riding his bike to work when he and his bike are literally run over by a chartered bus. His bike impale
Meg - A Bookish Affair
"The Long Run" is an incredible story of one man who is a firefighter with the New York City fire department. Because of the landscape of New York City, firefighting there has to be incredibly difficult. Long is dedicated to his job and to staying in the best physical condition that he can be in to be the best firefighter he can be. Life often has plans for us that we do not expect. It can be difficult but as Long's story shows, the human spirit is something to be reckoned with and where there i ...more
Oct 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: YA & Up
Recommended to Allison by: John Stewart Show
What an incredible inspiration Matt Long is. Reading this, it didn't really feeling like reading - it felt like I was sitting talking with Matt telling his story. I've read other autobiographies and biographies of inspiring folks but there usually is an element of pity to be felt for the subject. For as horrifying, hopeless and heart-wrenching as Matt's story is - I never once felt pity for him. His strength and honesty about his feelings, his appreciation of the help he received and recognition ...more
May 17, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to this audio book and it was more than what I was expecting. The horrific accident and his recovery ruined my make up on the way to work many days as I cried and cried. It was very easy to understand how his recovery was frustrating for him after being in such great shape and participating in triathlons. I was never anywhere near where he was but my recovery from cancer surgery and treatment didn't go fast enough for me as I was a runner. So I can only imagine the frustration he went ...more
Aug 18, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
Another book read with perfect timing after having doubts of being able to push myself through training for just a 15K. As I walked back from the coffee shop after finishing, I began to think I DO in fact need to push myself to do more than that and maybe even change my mindset about my life.
At first, I had a hard time getting into the book, thinking it was too graphic and the writing too simple. When I went back to reading it, I discovered that the simplicity was what made it inspiring and eas
Apr 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So here's the only thing I think I really *need* to say about this book: If you think that you are having a bad day, or week, or month, or year, just pick up this book. The next time you think you think you've been through something really "difficult" or get caught up in how "hard" your life has been, give, say, the first quarter of it a read. If you ever start feeling sorry for yourself or feel like you're going through something tough and are feeling frustrated & discouraged about how long ...more
Mark Poons
This book is a lot like running a marathon that you have not properly trained for. At the beginning you think this isn't bad, I could do this all day. But then you pass the mile/chapter 2 marker and you start to realize this is going to be a long and painful journey. By the middle, you're asking yourself, "Why did I get myself into this? Please God, just let it end."

This is a classic case of a magazine article being turned into a book. Do yourself a favor and find the article online. Then with
Dec 29, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a very inspiring book. Matt Long was an NYC firefighter who was biking to work due to an NYC transit strike. He was struck by a tour bus, pinned underneath, and impaled by the bike handle. Given a 5% chance to live, this book details his struggle back to be "normal" again. He had run marathons and done an Ironman, and he was determined to do so again. He endured several years of grueling physical therapy, and more than 40 surgeries, and two years later, he ran in the NYC marathon in a l ...more
Valley Cottage Library
I don't know exactly what it is about this guy but I just loved his voice and his story. I think I would have liked Matt Long had I known him before his accident. His spirit and eventual successes (the NYC marathon, completing an Ironman) just make him all the more likeable. Matt is painfully honest about his injuries and the impacts they have had on his body. He also admits to periods of deep despair and depression. I felt like cheering though when Matt picked himself up and through grit and de ...more
Michelle D.
Jun 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Mullica Hill Women's Tri Club invited Matt Long to a special club event a few months ago as a guest motivational speaker. Many of us when training for events whether it be just running events or triathlons often face many mental challenges/blocks. After reading his story, it really does show you that if you have the will and desire to accomplish something, anything is possible. A truly inspiring story.
Theresa Alan
Mar 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In this book, Matt Long, a New York City firefighter who survived 9/11 and ran in marathons and triathlons, is run over by a bus while riding his bike. He barely survives, and the road to physical and mental recovery is long, painful, and arduous. If you're in the mood to cry your guts out, I highly recommend this book.
May 03, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing and inspirational - I read it in one day! (Though I'll admit to skimming some of the paragraphs with descriptions of his injuries - they were a bit intense for me though). Matt's achievements and his attitude are incredible and I'd encourage everyone to read this.
Dec 17, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book for a lot of reasons... I am interested in a lot of the same things he enjoys doing, triumph over adversity, and his feelings felt really honest to me. I flew through this book at a tremendously busy time of the year, so that speaks to hoe much I liked it also!
Lisa Z.
Oct 16, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Inspiring--brought me to tears! If Matt Long can return to running after being run over by a bus, maybe I can make a come back from mono. ;)
Dec 06, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this. Anyone who considers him or herself an athlete should read it.
Jan 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was an absolutely phenomenal book. I recommend this to any athlete who has had tough times in their life or who has battled with inner demons telling them that they aren't good enough or aren't as good as they once were.

Matt Long was a New York Fire Fighter, a marathoner, and an Ironman....and then he got hit by a bus during the 2005 New York transit strike. In the book, Long gives many of the detail of his life before, during, and after the many surgeries.

The best take-away from the book i
Ashley Champlin
While Matt's accomplishments are nothing short of amazing and his story is inspiring, he comes across as so arrogant in the book. He also points the finger so many times at the strike going on being responsible for him getting hit by a bus. I didn't like that.
Michelle Manning Labuski
Well written. Great read. Loved this book.
Clark Goble
Mar 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I start off every year with the resolution to offer a mini review of every book I read in the upcoming year and, year after year, I fall short of that goal. Part of the problem is I read quite a bit, often juggling several books at a time, and often ditching a book as soon as I realize it’s not worth completing. If I fall behind a week or two in my reviews, it’s near impossible to catch back up. Recently, however, I finished Matt Long’s book The Long Run: A New York City Firefighter’s Triumphant ...more
Jul 15, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook, 2014
This was an incredible story - one that was real and raw. It shared some pretty intense emotions and very personal experiences with the reader. One thing I loved was that is was written in a style that is conversational, like you're listening to a friend tell you a story about someone they know. I couldn't put it down and every time I did, I couldn't wait to pick it up again. I even listened to it during one of my runs! I've read other reviewers who were put off by Matt's "tone" - calling him "b ...more
Eileen Souza
Oct 12, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: north-america, sport
I first became aware of Matt Long's story through a Runner's World article. The article was several chapters of his book about his recovery from being hit and run over by a city bus - and his desire to try to run a marathon again (when his doctors told him he may not walk). I immediately put it on my to read list.

This was a very good story. Matt Long was a firefighter in NYC who was at 9/11, who has represented the city for the FDNY. He was an unstoppable athlete - running marathons and completi
Jun 02, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
20140530 ◊ Moving and painfully honest, Matt Long's story is one that will stay with me for a good, long while. Seriously, this guy was a long distance runner, an Ironman, a New York City firefighter who lived through 9/11. He got run over by a bus while biking to an early-morning workout with his triathalon crew. Doctors and surgeons initially gave him the barest chance of survival after his traumatic accident. The story of how he overcame not only his physical injuries but his own inner demons ...more
Nov 12, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’ve read a few reviews stating that Matt Long is arrogant, egotistic, and/ or over confident. The guy is also a tri-athlete, Boston qualifier, and a FDNY fire fighter. I would not want to know a fire fighter that isn’t arrogant. If he wasn’t brimming with confidence I don’t think I would want him rushing into a burning building to save lives.

He knows that he is over confident and doesn’t shy away from it in “The Long Run.” That is a crucial point because he hits the skids with depression after
I probably would never have gotten around to reading this book, if it weren't for the fact that the co-author, Charles Butler, was scheduled to be a guest speaker at my running club's montly meeting in 2 weeks. I'm so glad that I did. Matt Long's story is amazing. One of New York's finest, this firefighter, runner and Ironman was run over by a bus while on his bike (due to a NY transit strike), only months after completing his first Ironman and a personal best at the New York Marathon. His injur ...more
Jul 31, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read an article that ran in Runner's World about NYC Firefighter Matt Long and how he had recuperated from a near-death accident with severe trauma and numerous surgeries to the point where he was able to start running again several years after his accident. It was deeply moving- so when I saw that he had written a book about his life, his accident, and his will to run again- I knew this was a book not to be missed. I devoured this personal account of Matt's life- his triumphs, setbacks, and e ...more
Matt Long's inspiring tale of determination, family support and beating incredible odds is a joy to read. To read of his return to running and becoming an Ironman again after such horrific injuries is amazing.

One thing Long's doctors did to save his life was a colostomy, essentially re-routing his colon to dispose of waste through an opening in his abdomen. Long speaks repeatedly about how his colostomy holds him back and makes his quality of life poor. He makes it seem like he can't do anythin
Mar 15, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir, running
This is the memoir of a firefighter and endurance triathlete who was hit by a commuter bus that made an illegal right turn during a New York City transit strike. But for the strike, the bus would not have been on the road and the author would not have been riding his bike that day. On the first day, his doctor gave him less than a 5% change of survival.

Reading about his surgeries and physical challenges was grueling, but it made me feel extremely lucky to have the able body I have, however limit
What a story! No, really ..WHAT A STORY! For anyone out there looking to be inspired by pure grit, tenacity, and physical & emotional strength, this is the book to read. While Matt Long may come across to some as an arrogant S.O.B., he is so much more, so much deeper than that. I read this book hoping for inspiration to run, but I came away with inspiration to LIVE LIFE, to not back down from fear or pain, to push myself beyond what I may limit myself to.

A review I read before starting this
Aug 20, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This story was, if nothing else, inspirational. There were parts that dragged and made the author seem whiny, but when I read the last page of the book I had tears in my eyes. The connection Matt Long has with his large family and how they banned together after his accident kept me interested. I wanted to read about how his best friend and brother, Jimmy, helped him recover emotionally. Also, how his parents could handle such a traumatic event for their son.
I thought the story spent too much ti
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“I survived because I had trained my heart to do the same: survive. Becoming an Ironman had kept me from becoming a dead man.” 0 likes
“What did I discover during my solo—besides learning to unwrap my energy bar ahead of time? That you ask yourself a lot of questions when you're alone on a bike for that long. One question more than others: Why the heck am I doing this? When I was done, I think I had found the answer: For the satisfaction that comes with pushing your body to the breaking point and conquering the unknown.” 0 likes
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