Fast Girl

Fast Girl

A Life Spent Running From Madness

eBook - 2015
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Suzy Favor Hamilton was born a fast girl Constantly in motion, Suzy was a natural athlete with a runner's body and the drive to go ever faster. That drive, and an insatiable need to win, propelled her into the spotlight and swiftly transformed her into the ultimate track-and-field sweetheart. Wholesome and victorious, she seemed to be the quintessential all-American athlete. She had everything natural beauty, talent, major endorsements, a seemingly supportive family, three trips to the Olympics representing her country, and a young husband who loved her. But underneath a facade of triumph lay a mind caught in a web of doubt, self-sabotage, and constant anxiety. It wasn't enough to win one race. Suzy had to win them all. And during the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, Australia, Suzy decided that she would rather force herself to collapse than be defeated on the world's stage. Her racing career ended in that moment. An attempt at normal life in Madison, Wisconsin, was at turns mind-numbingly dull and frightening, as Suzy navigated the responsibilities of holding down a nine-to-five job, caring for her young daughter, and trying to be the wife her husband thought he married. When she struggled on all those fronts, the escape she craved presented itself during a trip to Las Vegas. Vegas represented all the excitement, the rush, and the glamour that Suzy found herself needing more and more. There, in the city of sin, Suzy re-created herself as an in-demand escort, ready to wow her customers with her personality, her amazing body, and her skills. Living a double life, Suzy became more and more reckless in her constant search for a high that always eluded her. Until one day she discovered that all along she had been running from herself and the secret pain of an undiagnosed mental illness. Fast Girl is the shocking and inspiring story of a woman's struggle to outrun her demons and finally find peace."
Publisher: New York, NY :, Dey Street Books,, [2015]
ISBN: 9780062346216
Characteristics: 1 online resource
text file,rda


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Feb 20, 2018

The author was an all American athlete who made it for the Olympics 3 times in running, but with bio-polar which she found out she had later, she started to live a double life and became an in demand escort in vegas.
Her husband always loved her and supported her, and took care of their daughter through the hard years, but he didn't like how she was ruining her life.
She is the author and did a very good job at describing what escorts do, and how bio-polar effects a person.

Dec 29, 2017

This book reminded me of the book 'Wild" by Cheryl Strayed.

I hated that book.

But it was a popular booked that was loved by millions, so if you enjoyed 'Wild' I assume you will also enjoy this one. But to me it read like 392 pages of self pity as she talks about how everyone picks on her, hates her, doesn't understand her, all while married to her high school sweetheart who was her 'first.'

Oh the tragedy of six-figure endorsement deals and a successful career.

Not to downplay her own mental illness, but when you have a history of mental illness and ignore all the advice to see help before embarking upon a life as a sex worker, the only one to blame is YOU.

I also felt much was left out of the story line. But like I said, if you liked Wild, you will love this. If you think people are responsible for their own behaviors, you might be left thinking "B***h, please...."

Sep 03, 2016

It sure is nice to be white and blonde. Hamilton is a very insecure, mentally ill former whore, yet on the outside she seems to be an "all American girl". I wonder if an athlete like Serena Williams would receive as much mercy as Hamilton has if she made such horrible choices? Some people are generalized as having a flaw in their morality and humanity whereas others get to blame mental illness and their upbringing. Even in a comment below Hamilton's intergalactic whoredom is elevated as more honorable than Jacobs steroids use - You see Jacobs doesn't have the right look.

Jul 12, 2016

Not what I expected. Too much focus on her sexual exploits. Wow.

Apr 19, 2016

Go on Youtube after you read the book. She has several interviews where she speaks about her life. Not the best looking or the most intelligent sounding but at least she comes across as honest.

Dec 27, 2015

Interesting read, surprised that she would be diagnosed as bipolar for risky sexually activity.

Dec 22, 2015

I remembered her as the 90s U.S. golden girl of middle distances when the reports came out a few years ago. Finished this book in just a few sittings. Insightful.

Dec 11, 2015

A dozen years ago, I had wondered why Suzy didn't file a civil suit against the steroid cheater Jacobs. It turns out that Suzy had much larger issues going on. Suzy's year as a Vegas escort was far more honorable than Regina Jacob's decade as a steroid whore for Balco Labs.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

Feb 20, 2018

runningbeat thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

Jun 09, 2017

Angela_5021 thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over


Add a Summary

Nov 12, 2015

First things first...if you're looking for a book about running, then this is not your book; you should definitely check out Suzy's other, earlier publication, called Fast Track: Training and Nutrition Secrets from America's Top Female Runner. I've read it and it's really good, too. This book is the story of Suzy's real life, the one she didn't even recognize until she'd been able to step away from it and realize that she, like others in her family, suffers from mental illness; specifically, bipolar disorder.

That's not to say that she doesn't discuss her running career; she has made a connection between the way her running career, unintentionally, fueled her illness and she certainly had to find other ways to express herself, to find her "high," after years of training and racing at the elite level. In this book, Suzy is brutally honest; she discusses topics that could be difficult for some readers, like her sexual promiscuity and her penchant for putting herself into dangerous, nonsensical situations. In context, none of that should be too shocking; what's shocking is that it is often, still, so difficult for individuals to receive the correct diagnosis and the treatment they need for their unique symptoms.

I've read a lot of "judgy" reviews of this memoir and, while everyone is certainly entitled to their opinion, the reviews I've read by people who also suffer from mental illness are the ones that were the most impactful. This isn't a piece of classic literature, it's not going to answer everyone's questions about why or how or whatever, but it's Suzy's story and I respect her for choosing to share it in an attempt to come to terms with her illness, the things she's done in her life because of that illness, and with the hope that it might allow others to discuss their experiences and ask for help.

If you have a tendency to be judgmental about the stories of those who are dealing with things that you may not be able to understand, then this book will not be useful; I found it to be illuminating and a great way to gain better insight into the world of those who struggle with mental illness.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further


Subject Headings


Find it at MPL

To Top