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It's Not About the Bike: My Journey Back to Life [Anglais] [Broché]

Lance Armstrong , Sally Jenkins
4.2 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (4 commentaires client)
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Description de l'ouvrage

1 septembre 2001
Keep up to date with the latest on Lance at LanceArmstrong.com!

This is the story of one man's journey through triumph, tragedy, transformation, and transcendance. It is the story of Lance Armstrong, the six-time winner of the Tour de France, and his fight against cancer.

People magazine called it "inspiring." The New York Times called it "fascinating." But perhaps the Cincinnati Enquirer said it best: "It's not about the bike, or about the sport. It's about the soul."


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Descriptions du produit

Extrait

Before and After

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. I want to cross one last finish line as my stud wife and my ten children applaud, and then I want to lie down in a field of those famous French sunflowers and gracefully expire, the perfect contradiction to my once-anticipated poignant early demise.

A slow death is not for me. I don’t do anything slow, not even breathe. I do everything at a fast cadence: eat fast, sleep fast. It makes me crazy when my wife, Kristin, drives our car, because she brakes at all the yellow caution lights, while I squirm impatiently in the passenger seat.

“Come on, don’t be a skirt,” I tell her.

“Lance,” she says, “marry a man.”

I’ve spent my life racing my bike, from the back roads of Austin, Texas to the Champs-Elysées, and I always figured if I died an untimely death, it would be because some rancher in his Dodge 4x4 ran me headfirst into a ditch. Believe me, it could happen. Cyclists fight an ongoing war with guys in big trucks, and so many vehicles have hit me, so many times, in so many countries, I’ve lost count. I’ve learned how to take out my own stitches: all you need is a pair of fingernail clippers and a strong stomach.

If you saw my body underneath my racing jersey, you’d know what I’m talking about. I’ve got marbled scars on both arms and discolored marks up and down my legs, which I keep clean-shaven. Maybe that’s why trucks are always trying to run me over; they see my sissy-boy calves and decide not to brake. But cyclists have to shave, because when the gravel gets into your skin, it’s easier to clean and bandage if you have no hair.

One minute you’re pedaling along a highway, and the next minute, boom, you’re facedown in the dirt. A blast of hot air hits you, you taste the acrid, oily exhaust in the roof of your mouth, and all you can do is wave a fist at the disappearing taillights.

Cancer was like that. It was like being run off the road by a truck, and I’ve got the scars to prove it. There’s a puckered wound in my upper chest just above my heart, which is where the catheter was implanted. A surgical line runs from the right side of my groin into my upper thigh, where they cut out my testicle. But the real prizes are two deep half-moons in my scalp, as if I was kicked twice in the head by a horse. Those are the leftovers from brain surgery.

When I was 25, I got testicular cancer and nearly died. I was given less than a 40 percent chance of surviving, and frankly, some of my doctors were just being kind when they gave me those odds. Death is not exactly cocktail-party conversation, I know, and neither is cancer, or brain surgery, or matters below the waist. But I’m not here to make polite conversation. I want to tell the truth. I’m sure you’d like to hear about how Lance Armstrong became a Great American and an Inspiration To Us All, how he won the Tour de France, the 2,290-mile road race that’s considered the single most grueling sporting event on the face of the earth. You want to hear about faith and mystery, and my miraculous comeback, and how I joined towering figures like Greg LeMond and Miguel Indurain in the record book. You want to hear about my lyrical climb through the Alps and my heroic conquering of the Pyrenees, and how it felt. But the Tour was the least of the story.

Some of it is not easy to tell or comfortable to hear. I’m asking you now, at the outset, to put aside your ideas about heroes and miracles, because I’m not storybook material. This is not Disneyland, or Hollywood. I’ll give you an example: I’ve read that I flew up the hills and mountains of France. But you don’t fly up a hill. You struggle slowly and painfully up a hill, and maybe, if you work very hard, you get to the top ahead of everybody else.

Cancer is like that, too. Good, strong people get cancer, and they do all the right things to beat it, and they still die. That is the essential truth that you learn. People die. And after you learn it, all other matters seem irrelevant. They just seem small.

I don’t know why I’m still alive. I can only guess. I have a tough constitution, and my profession taught me how to compete against long odds and big obstacles. I like to train hard and I like to race hard. That helped, it was a good start, but it certainly wasn’t the determining factor. I can’t help feeling that my survival was more a matter of blind luck.

When I was 16, I was invited to undergo testing at a place in Dallas called the Cooper Clinic, a prestigious research lab and birthplace of the aerobic exercise revolution. A doctor there measured my VO2 max, which is a gauge of how much oxygen you can take in and use, and he says that my numbers are still the highest they’ve ever come across. Also, I produced less lactic acid than most people. Lactic acid is the chemical your body generates when it’s winded and fatigued—it’s what makes your lungs burn and your legs ache.

Basically, I can endure more physical stress than most people can, and I don’t get as tired while I’m doing it. So I figure maybe that helped me live. I was lucky—I was born with an above-average capacity for breathing. But even so, I was in a desperate, sick fog much of the time.

My illness was humbling and starkly revealing, and it forced me to survey my life with an unforgiving eye. There are some shameful episodes in it: instances of meanness, unfinished tasks, weakness, and regrets. I had to ask myself, “If I live, who is it that I intend to be?” I found that I had a lot of growing to do as a man.

I won’t kid you. There are two Lance Armstrongs, pre-cancer, and post. Everybody’s favorite question is “How did cancer change you?” The real question is how didn’t it change me? I left my house on October 2, 1996, as one person and came home another. I was a world-class athlete with a mansion on a riverbank, keys to a Porsche, and a self-made fortune in the bank. I was one of the top riders in the world and my career was moving along a perfect arc of success. I returned a different person, literally. In a way, the old me did die, and I was given a second life. Even my body is different, because during the chemotherapy I lost all the muscle I had ever built up, and when I recovered, it didn’t come back in the same way.

The truth is that cancer was the best thing that ever happened to me. I don’t know why I got the illness, but it did wonders for me, and I wouldn’t want to walk away from it. Why would I want to change, even for a day, the most important and shaping event in my life?

People die. That truth is so disheartening that at times I can’t bear to articulate it. Why should we go on, you might ask? Why don’t we all just stop and lie down where we are? But there is another truth, too. People live. It’s an equal and opposing truth. People live, and in the most remarkable ways. When I was sick, I saw more beauty and triumph and truth in a single day than I ever did in a bike race—but they were human moments, not miraculous ones. I met a guy in a fraying sweatsuit who turned out to be a brilliant surgeon. I became friends with a harassed and overscheduled nurse named LaTrice, who gave me such care that it could only be the result of the deepest sympathetic affinity. I saw children with no eyelashes or eyebrows, their hair burned away by chemo, who fought with the hearts of Indurains.

I still don’t completely understand it.

All I can do is tell you what happened.

 

 

Of course I should have known that something was wrong with me. But athletes, especially cyclists, are in the business of denial. You deny all the aches and pains because you have to in order to finish the race. It’s a sport of self-abuse. You’re on your bike for the whole day, six and seven hours, in all kinds of weather and conditions, over cobblestones and gravel, in mud and wind and rain, and even hail, and you do not give in to pain.

Everything hurts. Your back hurts, your feet hurt, your hands hurt, your neck hurts, your legs h...

Revue de presse

“Beautiful… It is a book for sports fans and sports haters, for cycling enthusiasts and those who haven’t ridden a bike since childhood, for cancer patients and the healthiest of the healthy, for anyone who has ever overcome odds…It’s not about the bike, or about the sport. It’s about the soul.”—Cincinnati Enquirer

“Lance Armstrong does things in a big way. Other people write books about the long road back from cancer, or the physical and emotional trauma of infertility, or the experience of growing up without a father, or the determination it takes to win the most important bicycle race in the world. Armstrong lays claim to all of it, and the result is a pretty terrific book…Armstrong’s book is both inspiring and entertaining. He doesn’t whine, doesn’t sugar-coat the tough parts and doesn’t forget to thank the good people who helped him most along the way.”—Denver Rocky Mountain News

“A disarming and spotless prose style, one far above par for sports memoirs.”—Publishers Weekly

“Fascinating.”—The New York Times

“Lots of drama…an inspirational story.”—People

“Absolutely absorbing…compelling.”—Denver Post

“It’s about far more than just the bike.”—San Antonio Express-News

“Stirring.” —Buffalo News

“A good, emotional, genuine story, eloquently woven by two master storytellers: Mr. Armstrong, with his honesty and detail, and Ms. Jenkins, for the artists’ polish she paints on his narrative… The description of the brutal ride into the French town Sestriere (a major Tour hurdle) is as good a piece of sportswriting as you’ll find, and the perfect climax for a fast story…captivating.” —Cincinnati Enquirer

“[This] is a book with an engaging frankness that reaches readers who’d never be interested in the gear-combination mathematics that engage zealous cyclists…a book that anyone who’s been confronted by cancer, personally or through a friend or relative, should read.” —Denver Post

“The descriptions of his sport, especially of his Tour victory, are gripping.” —St. Petersburg Times

“An all-American story…inspirational.” —Booklist

“The best biography of a cyclist I’ve ever read. Lance’s voice comes through in a way I’ve not seen in print before.” —Bill Strickland, Bicycling Magazine

Détails sur le produit

  • Broché: 304 pages
  • Editeur : Berkley Trade; Édition : Rei Rep (1 septembre 2001)
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 9780425179611
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425179611
  • ASIN: 0425179613
  • Dimensions du produit: 22,9 x 15,3 x 2,1 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 4.2 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (4 commentaires client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 108.689 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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Dans ce livre (En savoir plus)
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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. Lire la première page
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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Quatrième de couverture
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Commentaires en ligne 

4.2 étoiles sur 5
4.2 étoiles sur 5
Commentaires client les plus utiles
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Le livre en lui même est très bien écrit, retraçant son combat contre la maladie. Seuls les derniers chapitres dans lesquels il raconte sa victoire "propre" sur le Tour de France sont désormais grotesques.
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 WHAT AN AMERICAN HERO--I AM PROUD OF HIM 27 juillet 2001
Format:Relié
I never really took the sport of cycling too seriously until I started riding myself. Now I look at it in a different light. These athletes have strength and stamina I only dream I will one day achieve. But in Lance, the strength and stamina is multiplied by 1,000. I have read many biographies and auto bios; this one is without a doubt the most touching, sincere, and thought provoking book I have ever read. In at least three different points of the book, I cried (a feat that can only be done by a song or a movie for me and being a guy). First, when he found out he had cancer, he wondered if is was going to ride again (not live). Secondly when he came out of surgery, he asked for his mom. Thirdly, when he visited a very young cancer patient, after Lance won the Tour de France, and the child asked him for the box of cereal with his picture on it. "Without belief, we would be left with nothing but an overwhelming doom, every single day." Lance makes us believe in the human spirit and the belief that we can beat anything. Nothing is greater than the spirit; and Lance helped me find it again. Lance is the GREASTEST AMERICAN HERO; and a hero to me.
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4.0 étoiles sur 5 Becoming An Adult 27 juillet 2001
Format:Relié
This book is an excellent read. It is long on real-life and short on pity. There is a good look at life on a cycling/racing tour, something many Americans have never experienced. Lance Armstrong does a good job portraying his growth from a loud-mouthed, obnoxious teenager to a warm, caring adult. Although he does devote much of the book to his diagnosis, treatment and recovery from cancer, it is written in a matter-of-fact way, not a "poor me" way. He presents a good lesson in not ignoring unusual symptoms and getting to the doctor...had he done so when he first noticed changes in his body, he might have been spared much of the treatment agony he had to endure to save his life. This book is also a good lesson in exploring your treatment options, and seeking second, third, and even fourth opinions to save your life. This is an excellent book, easy to read, and gives us a realistic picture of the man behind the bike. Many good life lessons for all of us exist between the pages of this book.
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 Inspiring book 27 juillet 2001
Format:Relié
Anyone who thinks they've had a tough lot in life should read this book. Lance Armstrong details his early life where he is the son of a single mother, feeling like an outcast in his upper-middle-class neighborhood and high school. He is a restless angry teenager who finds that he has the physical ability and drive to become a great athlete. He finally finds the perfect sport in cycling and relentlessly pursues his goal to be the best. Just as he is gaining some recognition in the sport, he is told that he has testicular cancer. The odds against him are overwhelming, but he researches his options until he finds the hospital which he believes will give him the best treatment. He details the agony of surgery and chemo. and the reader begins to understand just what it must be like to be a cancer patient. Not only does he recover, but he goes back to cycling and becomes the best in the world. This book gives interesting insight into what it takes to be the an outstanding athlete and is inspiring for anyone who is facing difficult odds. It shows the gradual maturing of an impulsive and restless young man who is tempered by illness and who is finally able to be a world-class athlete and a family man.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.4 étoiles sur 5  861 commentaires
262 internautes sur 277 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 What an amazing book! 24 mai 2000
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
I'm a woman. I'm not a cyclist. I've never had cancer. I read mostly fiction. But this book absolutely blew me away. So much more than an athlete bio, this is a wonderfully told, brilliantly written story of a real American hero. The play-by-play cycling coverage is fascinating even to a non-cyclist and the detailed discussion of Lance's illness, treatment, and recovery is beyond inspiring. The look inside Lance's childhood, his love life, his amazing journey into fatherhood, and his role as a cancer activist is what brings the whole story home. So much more than a story of athletic achievement and cancer recovery, this is a story about triumph of the human spirit. I can't wait to root for Lance in this year's Tour de France and in the Olympics. Hopefully we'll be cheering him to victory for years to come. I have been talking about this book to anyone who will listen to me. Listen to me. Buy the book. You will not want to put it down. It is a story you will never forget.
124 internautes sur 138 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Truly Inspirational - A Must Read For All 2 juillet 2000
Par Chad Spivak - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
I had and beat testicular cancer just like Lance Armstrong, so I could truly relate to the incredible obstacles that he described in his amazing book.
This sincerely is an amazing story. I just wish I could have read it when I was going through my intense radiation treatments in my recovery, because I feel it would have made things easier for me. In his book, Armstong brings this disease into the public view, and allows people to see that it truly doesn't have to be a part of death, but, in fact, a part of life.
There are many stories within the book. His childhood, his attitudes towards his father figures, his early racing career, his battle with cancer, the stuggle to get back on top of his game, his love life, and, his extemely personal march towards fatherhood. Each and every one of these minor stories gives an overall inspirational journey into Lance Armstrong's remarkable life.
The writing is nicely detailed and allows for a good, easy-flowing read. The racing-scenes are action-packed, and make you feel as if you are right there on the bike with him. Armstong tells his tale using candid language and relates his stories of life with honesty and a pure heart. This book is a true inspiration to anyone. Please read this book. You cannot go wrong.
110 internautes sur 123 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 A nice evenings read 14 juillet 2000
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
I'm a physician and a bicycle racer and when I heard that LanceArmstrong had metastatic testicular cancer, my first thought, likemany in my field, was "He's dead." But Lance Armstrong's story has the happy Hollywood ending nobody expected four years ago. This isn't Shakespeare, but I found it to be compelling reading (a stay up til you finish it kind of read). I am especially appreciative of the insight into the human condition, how one responds to adversity by either giving up or fighting back. Many of his homilies such as "turning negatives into positives" struck a nerve with me, as I've come to expect setbacks to be followed by unexpected success because it's happened to me so many times. I'm pleased that the book is so popular, because maybe the rest of the world will stop thinking people like me aren't such freaks riding our bikes 50 miles in January. It offers a glimpse into our sport that most people don't get to see. But I mostly hope others find the human message of hope as inspirational as I did.
38 internautes sur 42 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 That's MY book, too. 11 décembre 2000
Par "tdetulleo" - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
After recently recovering from Cancer, my wife suggested that my "story" would make for a great book. I told her that there aren't too many people who would want to read about a nobody from New Jersey who went through a miserable experience with Cancer. I'd have to be a "somebody." Well, Lance Armstrong and Sally Jenkins wrote my book.
When I most recently saw media coverage of Lance's story and book, I was angry. I didn't want the public to believe that Cancer had a hollywood ending if you work hard and don't give up. There's nothing hollywood about Cancer and I resented the attention Lance was receiving. Then, I read the book.
IT'S REAL. Through the wonderfully constructed words of Sally Jenkins, and the raw, honest sentiments of Lance Armstrong, this book tells it like it is. Lance Armstrong is just like anyone else who happens to be diagnosed with a life-threatening illness. He is not a hero. He is not superhuman. He is human. And, in this book, he doesn't pretend to be anything but that.
This book takes you through all of the emotions of being a cancer patient; fear, sadness, anger, resentment, pity, hope, and so on. Though every patient is different, Lance's feelings echo those of myself and countless others who are in the survivor's club.
As a marathoner, I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Lance's cycling career. However, you don't have to be an athlete to appreciate his incredible drive, determination and accomplishments on a bike.
His story both on and off the bike is truly inspirational.
This book is for cancer patients and survivors. It is for their families and friends, who just can't fully understand what it is like to endure the physical and emotional challenges of the disease. It is for athletes of all skill levels, shapes and sizes. And, it is for ANYONE who needs a little perspective on just how precious life really is and what's important.
Thanks for reading.
51 internautes sur 58 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
1.0 étoiles sur 5 Okay, so it IS about the bike.... 20 octobre 2012
Par Mona Lisa - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
I read this book 11 years ago or so, when it first came out. Good book. Well written, entertaining. But, unfortunately, as subsequent events have revealed, the book is fiction. Because it was, well...it was about the bike all along. The bike, the money, the power, and the ego. This is a man who would stop at nothing to feed his need for power, including treating former employees, fellow riders, friends, even wives and girlfriends like dirt. The doping could be forgiven, but the bullying? Never.
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