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It's Not About The Bike: My Journey Back To Life. (Includes New Chapter on Tour de France 2000 and the Olympics) Paperback – 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: Berkley (2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780425179611
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425179611
  • ASIN: 0425179613
  • Product Dimensions: 15.5 x 2.2 x 23 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 363 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (542 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #61,020 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
I want to die at a hundred years old with an American flag on my back and the star of Texas on my helmet, after screaming down an Alpine descent on a bicycle at 75 miles per hour. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

Most helpful customer reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By "tuk9" on Aug. 23 2003
Format: Hardcover
Having never really been interested in cycling I bought this book since I wanted to know about Lance's fight with testicular cancer which killed my best friend three years ago in his early 30s. I was not just positively surprised but literally stunned and finished the book in two days.
Lance's life from his upbringing to early achievements, his fight with cancer to becoming the King of the Tour de France are written honestly and interestingly. Reading the book took me along the entire emotional spectrum and I enjoyed every minute of it. With a less than 3% chance to survive I am convinced that contrary to the title, his survival is about the bike. It tought him to fight, to personalize the challenge and to give it everything he has got.
Being German, I wanted Jan Ullrich to win the tour this year but having read what Lance has overcome and seeing him on the crucial day after falling due to spectator involvement, I now hope that he will win his sixth (and final?) Tour in 2004 to take his rightful place as the best rider who ever lived.
I felt compelled to write this review since I read some of the other reviews. While I understand some of the comments about him being egoistic, that is part of him too. He is not claiming to be perfect, far from it, and I do not judge the man but simply recommend his book as an uplifting and interesting read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Jenny H. on July 17 2004
Format: Paperback
I am a beginner runner. I picked up this book because I wanted to know more about Lance Armstrong. This book has taught me how much mental and physical training are required to be the best, consistently. I have enjoyed reading this book because of the humor, the clear and direct expression of ideas, and Lance's candor in his failures and triumphs. I am sure I will pick it up and read it again periodically.
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By M. Yakiwchuk TOP 500 REVIEWER on Sept. 20 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Generally speaking, when I read an autobiography, I prefer that it is written exclusively by the biographer; in this case, Lance Armstrong. For It's Not About The Bike, Mr. Armstrong chose to write the book with the assistance of sports columnist and Washington Post feature writer Sally Jenkins; and this was a mistake in my view. The parts of the book written by Armstrong are by turns entertaining, poignant, cringe-inducing, and above all honest. However, every now and then there is a sentence or a paragraph appears that feels out of place, like it was written by someone else: Sally Jenkins.

Interestingly, though Mr. Armstrong employs the assistance of a co-writer, he does not acknowledge Sally Jenkins' contributions in the main body of his book. Instead, he lists Ms. Jenkins' name last among those for whom "this book is for", writing that he met with her to write this book. Why someone with Armstrong's blunt yet frank manner would choose to employ a co-writer is beyond me: In public as well as (based on the accounts described in this book) in private Armstrong is never at a loss for words, nor does he seem to have any difficulty in making himself understood. If he had decided to write this book entirely on his own (as I believe he easily could have), It's Not About The Bike would rate 4 stars out of 5 for me with one star deducted because of the very brief descriptions of his experience in the Tour De France, which I had hoped to read more of. As it stands, whether it was due to the influence of Sally Jenkins or of some un-named publicist or handler of Mr. Armstrong, It's Not About The Bike feels incomplete, and airbrushed in parts. The story of Lance Armstrong's life is fascinating and this book is well worth reading. In the interests of full disclosure and authenticity, I simply would have prefered Armstrong stuck to telling the story of his life entirely in his own words. 3/5
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Format: Paperback
There's nothing I can say that hasn't been said. A fantastic book about an interesting character that has little to do with sports and more to do with the human spirit. This book details Lance's early life as he addresses his cocky, immature nature that quickly goes out the window when he begins his cancer battle. Lance is alive because his is famous. His cancer was so aggressive and mature that IMO what saved him is the unsolicited email from the doctor at Vanderbilt that eventually led him to the doctors at Indiana University. I like sports and would never have read a book just about cancer survival but this book was so highly recommended and for good reason.
The book finishes with Lance mentally battling to get back on the bike and on to greater glory. There is much to learn here also but the one downer would be listening to him describing his ideal marriage when of course it has already broken up.
I CANNOT RECOMMEND THIS BOOK HIGHER. You will not be disappointed. And yes, you will start following the Tour de France.
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By A Customer on May 26 2004
Format: Paperback
Lance Armstrong's autobiography "It's Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life," is a great book for anyone out there. It appeals to anyone who likes to read because it has many different stories. Lance tells stories about his childhood and growing up with his mother when he first started to bike. He then writes about his life after his childhood leading up to when he finds out that he has cancer and his life during his cancer and chemotherapy treatments. After all of this, he then goes on to tell stories about post-cancer life, and how he has become the worlds most dominant cyclist, the worlds best athlete, and how he has inspired many young kids to always try as hard as they can and never let life's obstacles stop them from getting to their dream.
This is probably the best book I have ever read because it had all of the elements that a book needs. I do enjoy cycling and mountain biking, so I can make that connection to myself. But the rest of this book and Lance Armstrong's life has a completely different background than mine. I have never had cancer, I live with both of my parents, I go to a good school with many teachers that care about me and what I do in the future. Lance Armstrong had cancer, he lived with his mom and her husbands that she would marry then divorce a few years later until he was about 18 or 19, and he had teachers who didn't think he was headed in the right direction in life because all he would do was go to triathlons and cycling events.
For Lance Armstrong to accomplish as much as he did in life is still amazing in my mind. I don't know anyone that could amount to anything like that when they have all those things happen in their life and survive cancer when given less than a 10% chance to live. This book is very inspirational and anyone who reads it will automatically become one of Lance Armstrong's many fans, even if you have never touched a bike in your life.
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