Right off the bat I have to say that I disagree with Eric and Rich's assessment of this book. They wrote here that they both found it "hard to get into and as a result did not like it very much". I on the other hand found it to be engrossing, engaging and a very enjoyable to read.
Its not a how to book though it does layout Bernd's preparations, experiments with diet, his training and his stunning description of the 100km race itself, run on October 4 1981 in Chicago Illinois. The race where he set a new world record over this distance. His journey is made all the more amazing as it's in an era before the "sports drink and supplement explosion" and Bernd takes you with him on his path of discovery and enlightenment.
His observations and explorations as a young man in africa with his parents collecting insect specimens for his father. His jouney through boarding school, his achievements, failures and lessons learned on the cross country team. The lessons being learned are not those of an elite runner but of a good one that can see something in the far distance that he is yet to fully recognize.
His passion to know why and to solve very complex biological and psychological problems, the eloquence he displays as he takes these very complex biological and psychological observations making them accessable to all of us, in my opinion, makes this book one of the very best Ive read.
The way in which Bernd explores and compares the enurance qualities and deficiencies found in the animal kingdom to our own qualities and deficiencies as endurance athelets is both thought provoking, enlightening and completely engaging.
I was hooked from the very first word and I highly recommend it.