Synopses & Reviews
October 14, 1989: The day of reckoning.
The six-time champion seeks to destroy his competition once and for all.
But his challenger knows he must win the race that matters most.
Driven by one of the most intense two-man rivalries in sport, Dave Scott and Mark Allen faced off at the Ironman® World Championship to contest a race that would redefine the limits of human endurance. Shoulder to shoulder through a 2.4-mile swim, a 112-mile bike race, and a 26.2-mile marathon, Scott and Allen battled at record pace for a grueling 139 miles. After 8 punishing hours, the margin of victory would be a mere 58 seconds.
Iron War is the soaring narrative of how two champions—one a master of pure will, the other plagued by self-doubt—drove themselves and each other to push beyond all known boundaries of physical performance in one of the most awe-inspiring races in sports history.
October 14, 1989, marked the much-anticipated showdown between a pair of superhuman athletes at the height of their racing careers.
Dave Scott and Mark Allen fought many battles prior to the 1989 Ironman® World Championship in Hawaii. Six times before, the talented challenger Allen had come up short. Scott, a primal force from the dawn of triathlon, was a power to be reckoned with—a champion who in his Ironman debut finished more than an hour ahead of his competition. Allen’s record was equally spectacular, yet while he was able to win races around the world, he repeatedly failed at the one that mattered most.
In the race that would become known as the Iron War, Scott and Allen raced side by side at world-record pace for a grueling 139 miles. Hordes of spectators lined the streets in the final 2.6 miles, drawn by the unfolding drama to witness one of the most extraordinary stories in the history of sports.
Sports journalist Matt Fitzgerald writes a riveting epic about the lives of two legendary rivals, each possessed by an unquenchable will to succeed. Beyond its compelling race narrative, Iron War is a fascinating exploration of how Allen and Scott became such driven athletes: one who fought his inner demons to become victorious and the other who was left unable to forgive his loss.
Hell-bent on achieving greatness, these two Ironman champions redefined the limits of endurance and mental toughness and forever transformed their sport.
“The 1989 Ironman World Championship is widely considered the most epic race in Ironman history, if not all of endurance sport. In his new book Iron War, Fitzgerald recounts in gripping detail the showdown between Mark Allen and Dave Scott. Iron War delves into the vastly different personalities and psyches of these two iconic athletes and presents an anatomy of mental toughness that both men shared.” — Triathlete magazine
“Dave Scott and Mark Allen had one of the greatest battles in sport history during their epic 1989 Ironman Hawaii matchup. Matt Fitzgerald captures the spirit of that duel in Iron War: Dave Scott, Mark Allen and the Greatest Race Ever Run. Iron War really a book that should be on your bookshelf if you have even the slightest interest in the sport of triathlon, but it also is a great read for anyone looking for inspiration in general.” — Slowtwitch.com
“There couldn't be two more divergent individuals in a single sport than Dave Scott and Mark Allen. One is an old-school jock (Scott) for whom victory comes with hard work, constant training, and a hard-edge attitude. The other (Allen) takes a more spiritual approach, letting his body tell him what it needs and freeing his mind of all negativity. Their different approaches served both men well as triathletes. Scott became the man to beat in the biggest event of the sport, the Ironman® World Championship, and Allen became the most famous runner-up to that main event, though in all other races, he was unbeatable. Still, he played second fiddle to Scott, who was called the Man. In the Ironman match of 1989, the two raced nose-to-nose to a thrilling conclusion. Fitzgerald opens [Iron War] in the final leg of the race, but before revealing the outcome, he takes readers through the lives of these two amazing endurance athletes, their training, their mind-sets, their rivalry, their mutual respect. A true page-turner about a too-little-known great moment in sports.” — Booklist (American Library Association, September 1, 2011)
“Captivating, animated, uniquely readable and downright thrilling. [Iron War] is a truly great read—and an ode to our sport with all its quirky characters and epic venues…It is absolutely comparable to Krakauer, Bowden (Blackhawk Down), or Sebastian Junger (The Perfect Storm)… Iron War is what we buy books for: Excitement, entertainment, information and inspiration. Iron War provides those things in volumes. It is great writing, great storytelling and a good historical record…It belongs on every triathlete’s reading list.” — TriSports.com (October, 2011)
“Iron War is the very first time our sport has engaged in Krakauer-style journalism, where full-featured personalities are presented to readers without excuse, or pause, or an author's self-censorship. Iron War is Fitzgerald's Krakauer moment…I've always been a fan of Dave Scott and Mark Allen. But they've always been two dimensional to me. Life-sized cardboard cut-outs. I must tell you I love them both more now, after having read [Iron War]. The book has added that third dimension…” — Dan Empfield, Slowtwitch.com (October, 2011)
“The 1989 Ironman® World Championship is widely considered the most epic race in Ironman history, if not all of endurance sport. In his new book Iron War, Fitzgerald recounts in gripping detail the showdown between Mark Allen and Dave Scott. Iron War delves into the vastly different personalities and psyches of these two iconic athletes and presents an anatomy of mental toughness that both men shared.” — Triathlete magazine (August, 2011)
“Dave Scott and Mark Allen had one of the greatest battles in sport history during their epic 1989 Ironman® Hawaii matchup. Matt Fitzgerald captures the spirit of that duel in Iron War: Dave Scott, Mark Allen and the Greatest Race Ever Run. Iron War really is a book that should be on your bookshelf if you have even the slightest interest in the sport of triathlon, but it also is a great read for anyone looking for inspiration in general.” — Slowtwitch.com (July, 2011)
“Captivating, animated, uniquely readable and downright thrilling. [Iron War] is a truly great read—and an ode to our sport with all its quirky characters and epic venues…It is absolutely comparable to Krakauer, Bowden (Blackhawk Down), or Sebastian Junger (The Perfect Storm)… Iron War is what we buy books for: Excitement, entertainment, information and inspiration.” — TriSports.com
“A true page-turner about a too-little-known great moment in sports.” — Booklist (American Library Association)
“For any triathlete or endurance athlete, or anyone who wonders what it takes to be the best in sport, Iron War is an excellent read…Readers will come away with a very strong understanding and appreciation for two of the true legends of our sport…as well as a very clear look at the greatest race ever run.” — Triathlete.com
“Iron War really is a book that should be on your bookshelf if you have even the slightest interest in the sport of triathlon, but it also is a great read for anyone looking for inspiration in general.” — Slowtwitch.com
“Fitzgerald eases readers into the nuances of the sport, capturing imaginations with a satisfying study of two exceptional athletes and what makes them tick.” — ForeWord magazine
“Iron War is the very first time our sport has engaged in Krakauer-style journalism, where full-featured personalities are presented to readers without excuse, or pause, or an author's self-censorship. Iron War is Fitzgerald's Krakauer moment.” — Slowtwitch.com
“Iron War by Matt Fitzgerald recounts the fabled Ironman world championship battle between triathlete legends Dave Scott and Mark Allen. By the end of the story, [triathletes] will feel like [they] personally know the athletes, raced side-by-side with them, and understands the amazing contribution they made to the sport.” — Active.com
“In his new book Iron War, Fitzgerald recounts in gripping detail the showdown between Mark Allen and Dave Scott. Iron War delves into the vastly different personalities and psyches of these two iconic athletes and presents an anatomy of mental toughness that both men shared.” — Triathlete magazine
“In an exhaustively researched book, Fitzgerald recreates the famous race between Dave Scott and Mark Allen in the 1989 Ironman World Championship….[Iron War] captures the strength of character of both athletes better than any other publication to date.” — Xtri.com
“The real gems of [Iron War]…are the robust descriptions of the race itself: the pain and suffering, the strategy, the story arc. The telling of this story gives insight into the race far beyond what we could see on the ABC special…or on YouTube today. It’s an insight that casual fans (and perhaps even athletes themselves) don’t often get. And for that reason alone, [Iron War] was one I could not put down.” — TriMadness
This is the first book to specifically address the unique weight management needs of 42 million Americans who compete in endurance sports. Author Matt Fitzgerald shows how athletes can identify their optimal weight and body composition, and follow a 5-step plan to get lean for faster racing and better health.
Matt Fitzgerald is a prolific journalist and an authority on sports nutrition and endurance sports. Since 2005, he has authored 10 books, including Brain Training for Runners and The Runner’s Body. He lives in San Diego, CA.
Endurance athletes are weight-conscious and given the miles and hours spent training, there’s a lot at stake. Weighing in just five or ten pounds over the ideal weight can dramatically impact race results. Author Matt Fitzgerald shows athletes how to identify their optimal weight and body composition to realize their goals. This 5-step plan to get lean is the key to faster racing and better health. With tools to improve diet, manage appetite, and time important nutrients, Racing Weight will inspire and equip athletes to make the subtle changes they need to start their next race at their optimal weight.
Whether they're training for a marathon or just trying to stay in shape, runners log hundreds of miles every year. "The Runner's Diary" gives them a place to keep track of them all. Inspired by VeloPress' best-selling training diaries for triathletes and cyclists, this comprehensive journal allows athletes to record all the information they need to stay on target with training goals and to better understand their performance. With ample space to note distance, pace, heart rate, and effort level, runners can review their entire season or refer back to earlier workouts. Room for tracking daily vital signs like resting heart rate, soreness, and quality of sleep and nutrition helps runners keep tabs on their overall health, while a race section with space for dates, distances, and times helps them chart their progress.
Most runners have become trained to ignore their sense of feel, which is the most powerful training tool a runner can use. By stripping away the math and gadgetry that has controlled modern training, RUN: The Mind-Body Method of Running by Feel will help runners break out into faster, more enjoyable training and racing.
Most serious runners don’t realize their potential. They simply stop getting faster and don’t understand why. The reason is simple: most runners are unable to run by feel. The best elite runners have learned that the key to faster running is to hear what their bodies are telling them.
Drawing on new research on endurance sports, best-selling author Matt Fitzgerald explores the practices of elite runners to explain why their techniques can be effective for all runners. RUN: The Mind-Body Method of Running by Feel will help runners reach their full potential by teaching them how to train in the most personalized and adaptable way.
Fitzgerald’s mind-body method will revolutionize how runners think about training, their personal limits, and their potential. RUN explains how to interpret emotional and physical messages like confidence, enjoyment, fatigue, suffering, and aches and pains. RUN guides readers toward the optimal balance of intensity and enjoyment, volume and recovery, repetition and variation. As the miles add up, runners will become increasingly confident that they are doing the right training on the right day, from one season to the next.
RUN marks the start of a better way to train. The culmination of science and personal experience, the mind-body method of running by feel will lead runners to faster, more enjoyable running.
Matt Fitzgerald is a prolific health and fitness journalist and author of several books on fitness, nutrition, and weight loss, including The Runner's Diary, Brain Training for Runners, and Performance Nutrition for Runners. Fitzgerald is also a featured coach with the online training group Training Peaks, where he creates interactive training plans for runners and triathletes.
On October 14, 1989, driven by one of the most intense and lasting two-man rivalries in any sport, a pair of generational talents at the height of their powers ran a race that redefined human limits.
The battle between Dave Scott and Mark Allen at the 13th Hawaii Ironman stands as one of the most dramatic stories in the history of athletics. The two greatest athletes of triathlon’s pioneering generation raced side by side, literally, for eight straight hours at breakneck speed before Allen finally tore away from his longtime nemesis with less than two miles left in the 140.6-mile event. His margin of victory was a scant 58 seconds. So intense was the drama, the race came to be known as “Iron War”— the single most awe-inspiring sporting event ever witnessed.
More than a compelling story, Iron War is a fascinating exploration of how Scott and Allen pushed themselves and each other—and what it takes for anyone to break through perceived limits. Much as Christopher McDougall added depth to Born to Run by tying in new research on the evolutionary origins of humans as runners, Iron War shows how new discoveries in neuroscience explain how some elite athletes are able to literally will their bodies to do things that should be beyond their capacities. The book weaves an examination of the anatomy of mental toughness into a gripping tale of athletic adventure. With its emotional and intellectual depth, Iron War is a captivating and thought-provoking portrait of the human will.
The 1989 Ironman® World Championship was the greatest race ever. In a spectacular duel that become known as the Iron War, the world's two strongest athletes raced side by side at world-record pace for a grueling 139 miles.
Driven by one of the fiercest rivalries in triathlon, Dave Scott and Mark Allen raced shoulder to shoulder through the Ironman 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike race, and 26.2-mile marathon. After 8 punishing hours, both men would demolish the previous record—and cross the finish line just 58 seconds apart. The race would redefine the limits of human endurance and the role of mental toughness in sports.
In his new book Iron War, sports journalist Matt Fitzgerald writes a riveting epic about how Allen and Scott drove themselves and each other through the most awe-inspiring race in sports history. Iron War goes beyond the pulse-pounding race story to offer a fascinating exploration of the lives of the world's two toughest men and their unquenchable desire to succeed.
Weaving an examination of mental resolve into a gripping tale of athletic adventure, Iron War is a soaring narrative of two champions and the paths that led to their stunning final showdown.
About the Author
“The elements and philosophy laid out in RUN were fundamental and played an essential role in my overall success throughout my career as a self-coached athlete. The ability to run by feel is a learned skill and without the capacity to self assess and adjust your training intuitively, you will inevitably fall short of your potential.” — Alan Culpepper, 2000 and 2004 U.S. Olympian, sub 4-minute miler, sub 2:10 marathoner
“ASICS was onto something when it chose its new name, a Latin abbreviation for ‘a sound mind in a sound body.’ This philosophy is the key to unlocking all the potential we hold. From my first race in junior high gym class to competing in the 2008 Olympic Marathon, I have found that the stronger my mind and spirit are, the further I am able to push myself. Any runner interested in maximizing potential must study the mind-body connection or their journey will not be complete.” — Ryan Hall, 2008 Olympian and two-time American record holder
“In his latest book, Matt Fitzgerald successfully explains the mind-body method of running. While this concept can be difficult to understand, Fitzgerald describes it in a way that will speak to beginners and elite runners alike. Anyone trying to improve and realize their true running potential should read Run.” — Kara Goucher, 2008 Olympian and World Championship medalist
“Run is full of information that will help all runners start training by feel. Once you learn to trust your instincts in training, your injuries will decrease and your personal records will fall.” — Amy Yoder Begley, 2008 Olympian and four-time U.S. national champion
“The coach knows what to do, the scientist tells us why. Fitzgerald’s Run artfully and responsibly blends scientifically grounded supportive research and convincing anecdotal evidence into a message that those of us who take running seriously must heed. Now the U.S. can learn the true secrets of the great African runners: That voice in your head that says, “Too much, too little, too hard, too easy”, despite what the device on your wrist says, is probably right!” — Bobby McGee, renowned running coach and author of Magical Running and Run Workouts for Runners and Triathletes
“As a long-time proponent of effort-based training, I highly recommend Run: The Mind-Body Method of Running by Feel. The reader will learn the most important concept in all of training—how to connect effort with pace. Using the techniques and ideas in this book, runners can expect more consistent training and racing results without the worry of external feedback from devices like GPS and heart rate monitors. I use effort-based training with the beginning runners, middle of the packers, and Olympians I coach and recommend all runners learn this valuable technique.” — Greg McMillan, M.S., McMillanRunning.com online coach
“After years of searching science journals for secret workouts and fitness techniques, Matt Fitzgerald has decided that the brain is the ultimate training tool. In this insightful and evidence-based book, he challenges us to achieve our potential by enjoying every run and race, even as we accept the pain.” — Amby Burfoot, editor at large, Runner's World; 1968 Boston Marathon winner
Table of Contents
1 The Moment
2 A Drop Too Much
3 Get a Grip
4 Pain Community
5 You Again
6 Dig Me Beach
7 Iron Will
8 Shot out of a Cannon
9 Burning Matches
10 Vision Quest
11 Breaking Point
12 The Man’s Search for Meaning
13 Shaman Surfer
Iron War Timeline
About the Author