Book Review: The Last Pick

author : Ontherun
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An inspirational biography about one of endurance sports early pioneers, David McGillivary, race director for the Boston Marathon.

In the winter of 2006-2007, my local tri club held an off-season program that had some guest speakers. The lineup included Karen Smyers. What I did not expect was a gentleman by the name of Dave McGillivary. Dave had just finished a book, about to be published, called The Last Pick. He spoke of many of the things he had done in his life, and shared a few of the stories in his book. His resume includes being the current race director for the Boston Marathon, running across the entire United States, and participating in 24 hour swims, bikes, and runs.

He also talked about what it was like to be a race director, both in running and in triathlon. He managed to get me to do something I do not often do: go out and purchase a book. It was well worth the read. From an early age, Dave was driven to do the things that people said he could not do. In team sports, he was often the last picked for the team, not due to a lack of heart, but a lack of size. He also learned that things happen for a reason, and to make the best of what God has given us.

Dave was involved in endurance sports back when the marathon was the top dog of going long. I would love to tell more about Dave’s book, but it was written so well, I could not do it enough justice. What I can do is highlight some of the people who were quoted on the cover and inside the jacket: Lance Armstrong (seven-time Tour de France winner), Amby Burfoot (1968 Boston Marathon champion and executive editor for Runner’s World), and Dave Scott (six-time Ironman Triathlon world champion).

This book will not show you how to turn a faster split on the swim, bike, or run. It will not teach you better form. What it may do is just inspire you to work harder to achieve what others say you cannot. It just may help you find out who you really are. It may also help you find ways to give back to others what has been given to you. This is an extremely inspirational book by a man who has given a lot to the endurance sport community. He is well respected inside of the sporting world, but few outside know who he is and what he has done. I strongly recommend picking this book up and giving it a read.

 

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date: October 3, 2007

Ontherun

Father of two, devoted husband, Clydesdale, hope to become just an age grouper someday. Competing in the 40-44 bracket this year. Have done a 1/2 Ironman tri, a marathon and a bunch of sprint and oly distance races. Member of BT since 12-1-03

avatarOntherun

Father of two, devoted husband, Clydesdale, hope to become just an age grouper someday. Competing in the 40-44 bracket this year. Have done a 1/2 Ironman tri, a marathon and a bunch of sprint and oly distance races. Member of BT since 12-1-03

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