It’s been months since I’ve been able to read a real book, but Baby M is finally
sleeping spending night time in her own room, which means that when I get into bed, I can have a light on and can read. There are lots of things from the last year that I want to catch up with, but I thought I’d start with a book that appeals to me on several levels. From Blind Man to Ironman by Haseeb Ahmad is a book that fits my aim as it’s an autobiographical account of how a visually impaired man became a record-breaking triathlete.
“My story is about triumph over adversity,” explains Haseeb Ahmad. “From becoming blind in my teens I would never have dreamt that almost 35 years later I would break the World Blind Ironman Record.”
From the start, you know that Haseeb has broken a world record, so the drive of the narrative is about how he got there. I really enjoy reading biographies and autobiographies as you get to know about people whose lives are different from your own… and Haseeb’s life couldn’t be more different than mine. Initially, he discusses his life as a young Pakistani Muslim living life in London, the Midlands and Pakistan. I expected to hear about his talent for sports as a youth, so it was interesting that there was little mention of it, which gives hope to anyone else who hasn’t been a gifted athlete in their youth (or at least has not discovered their talent at a young age).
Ahmad’s style of writing is fluid, which gripped me and made me read far later into the night than I should have on several occasions. Not only is the book well-written and beautiful printed, but I’ve not found any errors of spelling, punctuation and grammar, which is the kind of thing that keeps the former English teacher in me happy!
Obviously, I have an interest in triathlon, but I am also an advocate for inclusivity in sport. The details of how Haseeb worked with his guides interested me. I have been a guide runner with a great chap, Khalid, and have great admiration for anyone who manages to guide successfully – I blogged about my experience and still feel bad that I caused Khalid to stumble into a ditch. He narrowly avoided riding a tandem with me, as I found out I was pregnant and thought I’d better not!
Another element of interest for me were references to Chris Goodwin, a Southampton-based paratriathlete who trained with Southampton Tri Club for a number of years. It was interesting to hear about the (friendly) rivalry between him and Haseeb.
Overall, I really enjoyed reading this book. It was inspirational.
“I want to give hope and inspire anyone who may be struggling with life’s challenges to never give up. Every time I have fallen in life, sometimes literally, I have got back up and kept running – and that is my message to everyone out there… keep on running!”
If you want to learn more, please check out Haseeb’s blog.
I’m offering two lucky readers the chance to win a copy of From Blind Man to Ironman. If you want to be in with a chance of winning, just click on the link below:
The giveaway runs from 12:00am on Monday 23rd October 2017 to 12:00am on Monday 6th November. Full terms and conditions are available at the link below:
No purchase necessary. The winner will be picked at random by Rafflecopter and announced on this blog by Friday 10th November.
Please vote for me!
Thank you to everyone who’s voted for Fat Girl to Ironman so far – there’s still time to cast your vote in The 2018 Running Awards.