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The Looniness of the Long Distance Runner by Russell Taylor

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The Looniness of the Long Distance Runner is one comparatively unfit 39-year-old Londoner's humorous account of his attempt to run the New York marathon from scratch. Inspired by the charity running of his friends, Russell Taylor decided to spare himself the post-event trauma of trying to extract money from reluctant sponsors by writing this book and donating the proceeds to charity instead. This account follows our intrepid runner from the treadmills of a north London gym to the mean streets of Manhattan as we discover what lurks within the breast of the endurance athlete: an unreasonable hatred of his fellow runners (except nubile females of the species), a contempt for the idiocy of stadium announcers and a strange fear of spectators inanely shouting, "Keep going," by way of encouragement. Written with panache and self-deprecating humour, this is ideal entertainment for anyone who has ever run any distance on their own two legs.

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