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My Life on the Run: The Wit, Wisdom, and Insights of a Road Racing Icon

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  2,629 ratings  ·  221 reviews
Dubbed the "Mayor of Running," Bart Yasso is one of the best-known figures in the sport, but few people know why he started running competitively, how it changed his life, or how his brush with a crippling illness nearly ended his career a decade ago. With insight and humor, My Life on the Run chronicles the heatstroke and frostbite, heartache and triumphs he’s exper
Hardcover, 270 pages
Published May 13th 2008 by Rodale Books
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Average rating 3.95  · 
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 ·  2,629 ratings  ·  221 reviews

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Jan 31, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: memoir
The whole time I've been reading this book, I've been IM-ing or texting my friend all the places where I would never want to run.

I would not like to run up (or down) Mount Kilamanjaro.

I would not like to run through a wildlife preserve in Nepal where rhinoceroses roam freely and are likely to chase you if they get the chance at all.

I would not like to run nude.

I would not like to run through Death Valley.

I would not like to run in Antarctica, particularly if my hosts tried to feed me penguin. *c
Nov 26, 2010 rated it liked it
This was really fun, especially for someone who runs a lot.

I was recently training for my second NYC marathon (which went well, thank you), and went to the Marathon Expo a couple of days before the race to pick up my racing number. They also had a lot of booths, including one for Runner's World, one of my favorite magazines.

This book was written by the man that some people call "the Mayor of Running." The stories are interesting, wacky, and fun. Some of the races seem completely insane to me, in
Hideki Kino
Apr 14, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Runners
Recommended to Hideki by: Bart Yasso
Shelves: running-books
Bart Yasso's "My Life on The Run" is a fun read!

It is a shame that it took me so long to finish this book. I bought it in 2008, at the Philadelphia Marathon Expo (Marathon #3 for me). I finished it the morning of Marathon #89 (Maple Leaf Indoor Marathon), 3 years and 3 months later. In the meantime, I have seen and chatted with author Bart a number of times, and he even signed the book 3 times.

I enjoyed reading about how Bart was able to turn his life around from being a substance abuser to bec
Tiaan Stassen
Feb 24, 2019 rated it liked it
A quicker type of look through the life of the author, but with just enough info to keep you hooked. There are a lot of wild stories that kept me envious throughout this book (although some i would really not do in my lifetime). A good read for those adventurous types.
Jacques Bezuidenhout
Bart Yasso has experienced it all (almost).
He has some races / achievements behind his name most people can only dream about.

I did like the fact that I have one up on him. He mentions that it is a wish/dream of his to be able to run the Comrades Marathon here in South Africa. This will probable never happen for him, as he is on the older side now, and with his chronic lime disease, it is probably impossible. Having done this race, I feel a sense of achievement in comparison to his accomplishment
Andrew Stuckey
May 21, 2015 rated it liked it
Bart Yasso worked at Runner’s World magazine for almost 30 years prior to writing this book. During that time he competed in something like 1,000 competitive races, including some of the most unique races in the world (Antarctica Marathon, Bare Buns Fun Run in Washington State, etc.). Hearing Yasso recount these experiences and learning about how many different types of race are available out there for runners is definitely fascinating. But I couldn’t help but think that it could have been much ...more
Akif Aziz
Apr 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned
This book is truly inspiring. It is about an epic running journey of Bart Yasso, who was an alcoholic-turned-runner. He is one of the best-known runner of all time.

There are many wisdoms and insights for both experienced and newbie runners. Bart has completed more than 1000 races all over 7 continents, therefore I must say that all these wisdoms and insights are priceless. And it makes me want to hit the road every time I read the book!

What I found most inspiring is the fact that running change
Kelly Mogilefsky
Feb 26, 2010 rated it really liked it
This book tells the interesting story of a most interesting runner. Bart Yasso's life and the role running has played in it could easily inspire anyone to achieve, and clearly it has inspired many all over the globe.

What impresses me most about Yasso, and, indeed, about most runners, is their openness. It is what makes running possible for a snail like me....Even for a guy who would always be at the head of the pack, Yasso believes that there is a place for everyone in the race. The book reflec
Lisa Topp
Mar 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: all runners
Recommended to Lisa by: Laura
I had to give this book five stars for pure entertainment value. I often interrupted my poor husband's reading to read excerpts that made me laugh out loud. Several times I was shaking my head, marveling at the 'no fear' lifestyle that Yasso embraced. Although not many runners will accomplish what Yasso did in his lifetime, through his stories and love of all things running, he expresses the message that all runners are part of the bigger running community, no matter how far or how fast they may ...more
Dec 23, 2010 rated it really liked it
This was a fun book to read. Bart Yasso, editor of Runner's World, and creator of the Yasso 800- the training tool I used to get me to Boston. He's a life long runner, so dedicated to the sport just because he loves it. He tells his story of how he got into running, how it saved his life from one full of drugs and booze. It gave him purpose, led him to his great job and his wife. He's lived a unique life, lives with a terminal illness and has traveled to crazy places and run races all over the w ...more
Aug 02, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
I worked with Bart at Runner's World so I knew some of this story, but not all the details. His story was a flashback of sorts for me to another time in my life when I, too, worked for Runner's World.
Nov 03, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: swimbikerun
GREAT read and totally inspiring! Yasso reminded me that running should be FUN above all else. He's been on some crazy adventures and got the stories to prove it. What an inspiration! I'm almost ready to sign up for a marathon...

Last 1/3 to 1/4 of the book has training plans for racing.
Jun 18, 2010 rated it really liked it
A fun read! Yasso somehow manages to write about some amazing athletic feats without once sounding pompous or superior. In fact, he makes every event sound accessible to the average person, regardless of age or gender. I guess he's fulfilling his lifetime goal of bringing running to the masses.
Sep 11, 2019 rated it liked it
This book is very strange. Part of it consists of Yasso's self-told biography and running vignettes. Then it makes an awkward switch to his training plans. Then he has a section on his favorite not-to-miss races.

Aside from the peculiar assemblage of material, Yasso's personality (as expressed here) rubs both ways. It is easy to admire and like him, especially since he has done so much for the sport. But then the way he talks about women, women's running, and people of different ethnicities, nat
May 26, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: biographies, running
Who knew there were so many different kinds of races around the world? It definitely gives me motivation to want to try some of them out one day after reading Yasso's accounts of his travels! Yasso comes across as very genuine and down-to-earth in his writing and I have no doubt what you read is what you get with him, based on what I've heard about him in other books and magazines at Runners' World events. His attitude is inspiring and infectious. Anyone that enjoys running or even traveling wil ...more
Colleen Grande
Feb 18, 2019 rated it liked it
Interesting stories, but he could have gone into a lot more detail. Seems like every story was "I didn't think I could do this race.... then I won it." Also, really don't love his blatant disregard for his health. I thought a big part of the book would be his recoveries from chronic Lyme's disease and it was just him being like "I had a terrible flare up. But I still ran a 2:45 marathon 6 weeks later" - so irresponsible. Someone like him should be encouraging people to find balance in their heal ...more
Allison Sauntry
Sep 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book is a must-read for anyone who is passionate about running! I really enjoyed the author's philosophical musings on running, which echo what I love so much about the sport-- the camaraderie among runners, the fact that it's for everyone who wants to participate, the personal satisfaction. And since I'm incorporating the author's famous "Yasso 800s" into my latest marathon training plan, it was cool to read how he came up with those. Loved it!
Oct 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
This was a thoroughly enjoyable and inspiring book. Reading Bart's hilarious exploits wanted me to start running (which incidentally I have done). Bart taps into the primal reasons for running and the addictive joy that runners get from doing something that is so natural for humans - running. Although it is something that we seem to have forgotten. Thanks, Bart!!
Dec 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: for-fun-uni, 2016, running
The kind of book you aren't really reading because of the quality of the writing or the text. Written just well enough to let the main point of it, Yasso's myriad of crazy and fabulous and interesting running stories, shine.
Jul 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Great book about running and one of its most loved figures. Would be good for any runner, someone looking at running or someone wondering why runners do what they do or even someone just looking for a book filled with a bunch of good stories told by their oddball uncle.
Michelle Perin
Mar 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book not only inspired me to keep running, but to push myself, improve and see loves of new places. I knew destination runs were a thing, but this book cemented how I need this in my life. Very inspiring although the 6 minute miles made me want to throw up just thinking about them.
Apr 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I loved listening to this while I was running, finishing 6 miles feels like nothing compared to hearing about running through the Badlands. I geared up during a few parts, but it was mostly funny and inspiring and an absolute joy.
Jennifer Martin
May 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Loved this book and recommendation of great races
Michael Markey
Jul 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It was a very entertaining book.
Aug 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Fantastic running memoir.
Adam Bricker
Sep 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
I don't run as much as I used to, but this book reminded me of all the things I love about it. With stories of encouragement and struggle and joy and pain...this has it all!
Dec 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
Fun book to read about some of the running experiences and lessons of Bart Yasso! The training plans are useful too.
Jan 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
A quick and entertaining book. I borrowed this book a while ago and I am not sure why I didn’t read it sooner. This guy has really done it all.
Kelli Bonin
Feb 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Bart is charming and hilarious. No wonder everyone loves him. Must read the donkey race chapter.
Jacob M.
Apr 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Felt a little loose in style, more like a well-kept journal, but otherwise inspiring and a joy to read.
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Taking the Long W...: November's review and linkup are live 1 6 Nov 16, 2015 04:52AM  

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