Ultramarathon Man: Confessions of an All-night Runner

Front Cover
J.P. Tarcher/Penguin, 2005 - Biography & Autobiography - 280 pages
1191 Reviews
In one of his most ambitious physical efforts to date, Dean Karnazes attempted to run 50 marathons, in 50 states, in 50 days to raise awareness of youth obesity and urge Americans of all fitness levels to "take that next step."

"UltraMarathon Man: 50 Marathons - 50 States - 50 Days", a Journeyfilm documentary, follows Dean's incredible step-by-step journey across the country.

There are those of us whose idea of the ultimate physical challenge is the 26.2-mile Boston Marathon. And then there is Dean Karnazes. Karnazes has run 226.2 miles nonstop; he has completed the 135-mile Badwater Ultramara-thon across Death Valley National Park-considered the world's toughest footrace-in 130-degree weather; and he is the only person to complete a marathon to the South Pole in running shoes (and probably the only person to eat an entire pizza and a whole cheesecake while running).

Karnazes is an ultramarathoner: a member of a small, elite, hard-core group of extreme athletes who race 50 miles, 100 miles, and longer. They can run forty-eight hours and more without sleep, barely pausing for food or water or even to use the bathroom. They can scale mountains, in brutally hot or cold weather, pushing their bodies, minds, and spirits well past what seems humanly possible.

Ultramarathon Man is Dean Karnazes's story: the mind-boggling adventures of his nonstop treks through the hell of Death Valley, the incomprehensible frigidity of the South Pole, and the breathtaking beauty of the mountains and canyons of the Sierra Nevada. Karnazes captures the euphoria and out-of-body highs of these adventures.

With an insight and candor rarely seen in sports memoirs, he also reveals how he merges the solitary, manic, self-absorbed life of hard-core ultrarunning with a full-time job, a wife, and two children, and how running has made him who he is today: a man with an überjock's body, a teenager's energy, and a champion's wisdom.

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
2 stars
1 star

An awesome insight on one tough runner! - Goodreads
Dean is a terrible writer. - Goodreads
It's just a great, fun read with lots of pace to it. - Goodreads
I loved his writing and his journey. - Goodreads
He's a much better runner than he is a writer. - Goodreads
At times the writing was strained as well. - Goodreads

Review: Ultramarathon Man: Confessions of an All-Night Runner

User Review  - Riley - Goodreads

I really enjoyed this book. Extremely easy to read, very entertaining, laugh-out-loud funny in places and touching without being cheesy in others. Whether you like running or not, absolutely worth ... Read full review

Review: Ultramarathon Man: Confessions of an All-Night Runner

User Review  - Barefoot Bendy - Goodreads

i have little good to say about this book so i will say little except that i am grateful it was a fast read. Read full review

All 4 reviews »

About the author (2005)

Dean Karnazes, who was named one of the Top 10 Ultimate Athletes by Outside magazine, is president of EnergyWell Natural Foods in San Francisco.

Bibliographic information