Running on Empty: An Ultramarathoner's Story of Love, Loss, and a Record-Setting Run Across America

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Overview


117 marathons, 52 days, 32 pairs of shoes, 57 years old: A fascinating glimpse inside the mind of an ultramarathon runner and the inspirational saga of his phenomenal journey running across America.

The ultimate endurance athlete, Marshall Ulrich has run more than 100 foot races averaging over 100 miles each, completed 12 expedition-length adventure races, and ascended the Seven Summits - including Mount Everest - all on his first attempt. Yet his run from California to New ...

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Running on Empty: An Ultramarathoner's Story of Love, Loss, and a Record-Setting Run Across America

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Overview


117 marathons, 52 days, 32 pairs of shoes, 57 years old: A fascinating glimpse inside the mind of an ultramarathon runner and the inspirational saga of his phenomenal journey running across America.

The ultimate endurance athlete, Marshall Ulrich has run more than 100 foot races averaging over 100 miles each, completed 12 expedition-length adventure races, and ascended the Seven Summits - including Mount Everest - all on his first attempt. Yet his run from California to New York- the equivalent of running two marathons and a 10K every day for nearly two months straight - proved to be his most challenging effort yet.

Featured in the recent documentary film, Running America, Ulrich clocked the 3rd fastest transcontinental crossing to date and set new records in multiple divisions. In Running on Empty, he shares the gritty backstory, including brushes with death, run-ins with the police, and the excruciating punishments he endured at the mercy of his maxed-out body. Ulrich also reached back nearly 30 years to when the death of the woman he loved drove him to begin running - and his dawning realization that he felt truly alive only when pushed to the limits.

Filled with mind-blowing stories from the road and his sensational career, Ulrich's memoir imbues an incredible read with a universal message for athletes and nonathletes alike: face the toughest challenges, overcome debilitating setbacks, and find deep fulfillment in something greater than achievement

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

There is endurance and then there is something beyond endurance. When 57-year-old Marshall Ulrich ran the equivalents of 117 marathons in 52 days (yes, you read right!), he crossed beyond the threshold that even world-class ultrarunners can hope to achieve. In Running on Empty, the "Endurance King" chronicles his record-smashing 2008 transcontinental run and describes what drove him to his relentless efforts to push his body to its limits. The next stage for readers of Dean Karnazes' Ultramarathon Man and Chris McDougall's Born to Run.

Library Journal
In 2008, Ulrich, a record-breaking ultramarathoner, set out to accomplish the ultimate ultrarunning goal: running across the United States. He here tells a story of physical and mental stresses, also including further details of his personal history and successes as a competitive ultramarathoner. He reveals how he used running to distance himself from conflict and his emotions, causing strained relationships with his three children. Through this book, Ulrich describes how the transcontinental run put an incredible strain on his body, causing him to become more dependent and emotionally closer to his current wife. The appendixes include his training, race statistics, diet and nutrition plan, injuries sustained, and gear. Ulrich joins an elite group of transcontinental runners; however, his writing makes tedious and repetitive what should be a fascinating story. Despite these flaws, Ulrich is an inspiring character, and his book is recommended for readers interested enough in the topic to bear with its weaknesses.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781583334904
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 4/3/2012
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 490,260
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Marshall Ulrich

Marshall Ulrich is an extreme-endurance athlete, ultrarunner, mountaineer, and adventure racer. His career has earned him wins, records, and firsts on some of the toughest courses in the world and has taken him to the top of the highest mountains. He lives in Idaho Springs, Colorado.

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Table of Contents

Foreword xi

Prologue 1

Part I Desert

1 As Far As I Can, As Fast As I Can 15

2 Legacy 31

3 It's Just Who I Am 43

4 Fool's Errand 57

5 Running Machine 71

Part II Heartland

6 Coming Home 97

7 This Is Not My Foot 125

8 States of Mind 143

9 The 400-Mile Workweek 163

10 Competitive Spirit 181

Part III Liberty

11 Stop Crapping in Cornfields 201

12 Running Out 221

13 Rest 233

Running America (poem by Joanne V. Gabbin) 245

Appendixes 247

List of Illustrations 290

Acknowledgments 293

Bibliography 296

Index 297

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 8 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 21, 2012

    Highly Recommend

    I throughly enjoyed this book and was surprised at how quickly I read through it. As someone who recently "discovered" running at the age of 45, I could really relate to Marshall. I found his accounts of his run to be quite interesting. His honesty about events, even if it reflects poorly on himself, is refreshing. From the highs to the lows that followed him across the country on his epic adventure, this story will keep you engaged and wanting to get to the next page to see what happens next.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 17, 2012

    Running with an Amazing Athlete

    Running on Empty An Ultra-marathoner’s Story of Love, Loss, and a Record-Setting Run Across America 3,063 Miles, 52 days, 57 Years Old Marshall Ulrich ©2011 Penguin Group, Inc. ISBN 978-1-58333-423-2 243 pp. plus Appendices and Index (Hdbk) Marshall Ulrich eventually realized he began ultra-distance running to avoid dealing with his problems, foremost the death of his first wife and two other failed marriages. But he ran across the USA at age 57 to earn money for charity. When his present wife, Heather asked him why he ran, he said, “Because that’s who I am.” Writing about this fifty –two day run, Ulrich shares his preparation, challenges, difficulties, pleasures, lessons he learned and friendships gained, including that of his three adult children. He knows Heather’s love and support brought him through impossible situations. Running on Empty reads like an exciting adventure. This amazing athlete motivates others to accept hardships in order to gain important goals. And he’s truly an inspiration. His ten commandments for endurance are well worth remembering and applying. A highly sought-after trainer, speaker and guide, Ulrich has been on a number of TV shows and featured in major newspapers and magazines.

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  • Posted October 23, 2011

    Enjoyed this book very much.

    I enjoyed reading about Marshall's journey. He shared an amazing story of fortitude in Running America. I appreciated how much of his human flaws he shared as well as his triumphs. I also am baffled at how gracefully he handled Charlie Engle's ego and attitude. I will be following Marshall's exploits from here on out.

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  • Posted August 2, 2011

    Very good book for hard core runners (are some that wish they were!)

    Outstanding detail. I like the way Mr. Ulrich let you in to his mind and some of the simple joys he found in his travels.

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    Posted October 27, 2011

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    Posted July 12, 2011

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    Posted July 31, 2011

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    Posted April 20, 2013

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