- 8,99 €
In 490 BCE Pheidippides ran for 36 hours straight from Athens to Sparta to seek help in defending Athens from a Persian invasion. He was hailed as a hero and his run stands enduringly as one of greatest physical accomplishments in history.
Dean Karnazes honours this achievement and his own Greek heritage by attempting this ancient journey in modern times. His account of running the gruelling Spartathlon, fuelled only by the figs, olives and meats available to Pheidippides, will captivate even the most sedentary readers.
Endurance athlete and author Karnazes (Ultramarathon Man: Confessions of an All-Night Runner) recounts his participation in the 153-mile race from Athens to Sparta in this engaging memoir. After logging a remarkable list of running accomplishments including running an ultramarathon across Death Valley in 120-degree heat, running to the South Pole in 40 degrees, and running 50 marathons in 50 states in 50 consecutive days Karnazes details the difficulties and joys of training for and running the Athens-to-Sparta route. He provides an eye-opening historical refresher course recounting the ancient battle between the Greeks and the Persians, when Pheidippides ran from Athens to Sparta then turned around and ran from Sparta to Marathon, via Athens, in order to deliver crucial information. "My point," he writes, "is that the annals of history have grossly under-recognized the significance of Pheidippides's superhuman act." Karnazes recounts his family history with its Greek roots and explores the deep feelings he develops for the people and landscape of his ancestral homeland. As the author readies for the race, he explains, "For me, the quest was deeply personal. I'd been waiting a lifetime to be standing in this place, and at that moment I saw this more clearly than ever." This is a remarkable and inspiring memoir that will have casual and serious runners cheering.