An Accidental Athlete: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Middle Age

An Accidental Athlete: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Middle Age

by John "The Penguin" Bingham, John Bingham

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Overview

An Accidental Athlete: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Middle Age by John "The Penguin" Bingham, John Bingham

A funny thing happened on my way to middle age. I became an athlete. And not just any athlete, but a runner—all without taking a running step until I was 43 years old.

Known by fans as "The Penguin" for his back-of-the-pack speed, John Bingham is the unlikely hero of the modern running boom. In this warm, witty memoir, the best-selling author and columnist recalls his childhood dreams of athletic glory, sedentary years of unhealthy excess, and a life-changing transformation from couch potato to "adult-onset athlete."

Overweight, uninspired, and saddled with a pack-and-a-half-a-day smoking habit, Bingham found himself firmly wedged into a middle-age slump. Then two scary trips to the emergency room and a conversation with a happy piano tuner led him to discover running—and changed his life forever.

In turns inspiring, poignant, hilarious, and heartbreaking, An Accidental Athlete is the story of the unexpected joys of running—the pride of the finisher's medal, a bureau-busting t-shirt collection, intense back-of-the-pack strategizing. And one man's discovery that middle age was not the finish line after all, but only the beginning.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781934030738
Publisher: VeloPress
Publication date: 08/01/2011
Pages: 216
Sales rank: 1,225,945
Product dimensions: 4.90(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Since his column, The Penguin Chronicles, started in Runner's World magazine in 1996, John “The Penguin” Bingham has become one of the running community's most popular and recognized personalities. Now, as a featured columnist for Competitor Magazine, national spokesperson for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Team in Training and principal announcer at the Rock ‘N’ Roll Marathon series, his popularity continues to grow. Prior titles include The Courage to Start: A Guide to Running for Your Life; No Need for Speed: A Beginner's Guide to the Joy of Running; Marathoning for Mortals: A Regular Person's Guide to the Joy of Running or Walking a Full or Half Marathon; and Running for Mortals: A Commonsense Plan for Changing Your Life With Running.

Table of Contents

Introduction

Section One: The Kid Picked Last
Chapter 1: Sandbox Nonnie
Chapter 2: Death by Dodgeball
Chapter 3: Bowled Over
Chapter 4: Smoke and PT

Section Two: The Adult Onset Athlete
Chapter 5: Release from Sedentary Confinement
Chapter 6: Hitting the Road
Chapter 7: Off to the Races
Chapter 8: Black Toenails and Chafing

Section Three: The Glory Years
Chapter 9: Collecting T-shirts
Chapter 10: Medals and Mettle
Chapter 11: The Need for Speed
Chapter 12: Looking for Adventure

Section Four: The Back Nine
Chapter 13: The Last Best Day
Chapter 14: The Comeback Kid
Chapter 15: When Less is More
Chapter 16 - One Day at a Time

Epilogue: Running Into Myself

Interviews

Bingham lives and runs near Chicago, Illinois.

 

Customer Reviews

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Accidental Athlete 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 22 reviews.
tori7870 More than 1 year ago
Very inspiring book. Easy to read and fun to follow. At some points of the book I was laughing so hard I cried! Worth the read-great for those needing a lil reassurance with their beginning running.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love reading (and also listening to) John Bingham's writing. He's funny and he's honest. And his words ring so true!! A great read for all "adult-onset athletes"!!
PogoOR More than 1 year ago
This book was laugh out loud funny for me. I found myself on my treadmill laughing and identifying with many stories. Once of the most enjoyable books I have read in a long time. It will be a book that I will read again just to make sure I didn't miss anything and to have another good laugh. They say laughter is good for the soul and so is "An Accidental Athlete." So happy I made the purchase.
BookerS More than 1 year ago
Gave me the courage to get out there & run even though I no longer have any hope of being 'First'. I am my own winner. Thanks John for your story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Bobby_West More than 1 year ago
The book reminded me of my days in Middle and High School. The days when I wasn't an athlete to anyone who looked at me. Very funny at times and thought provoking.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
John Bingham wrote a great book for beginner runners to connect to and also answer some questions we all ask! Great read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What a fun read. Enteraning while also being spot-on. Recommended to friends already!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Funny, read the this book with a smile!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Nice little quick book. There is a good bit of inspiration and wisdom within. However, it is not the most gripping running related book i have ever read. It is great if you are coming back from a set back and could use a little inspiration from an average joe who has run over 40 marathons.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As a 12 minute per mile runner who didn't start running until I was 46 I could relate. I have a penguin sticker on my car that says "I'm slow I know. Get over it"
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kathy Klenke More than 1 year ago
This is a great read for anyone who has the desire to become a runner in mid-life. Very real and relatable!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
LEH03 More than 1 year ago
You will love this book. The Penguin proves once again there is no reason not to get up off the couch and change your life
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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