Ng thinks innovation and creativity can be learned — that they are pattern-recognition and combinatorial creativity exercises which can be performed by an intelligent and devoted practitioner with the right approach. He also encourages the creation of new things; new businesses, new technologies. And on that topic, Ng has a few book recommendations. Given his list of accomplishments, the quality of his mind, and his admitted devotion to reading the printed word, it seems worth our time to check out the list.
What change in your approach to training has had the biggest impact on your success?
Just taking an overall professional approach. My coach Harry Marra has instilled that into our training process. Everything we do has a reason and a purpose, everything is well thought out. We always remain flexible in our approach, but we don’t ever do anything haphazardly. We always have a reason for what we do in training.
In the US, a traditional career is designed as a marathon, with the finish line at age 65. After a 40-year grind, we’re expected to stop working and revel in a life of idle, stress-free days funded by hard-earned pension plans.
But not everyone wants to stop: For the few who’ve found a way to blur that proverbial work-life dichotomy, retirement is more dead end than welcome repose.
After 500 miles on a bike, 10 in the water and more than 100 on foot, it will make perfect sense to grab a branch and a broomstick in a desperate bid to propel yourself — like a giant mutant insect — the last 31 miles. It will not be enough. You will collapse on the road.
Seasick, miles into the swim, you will vomit. Twice.
Neck cramps will attack so fiercely on the bike that your head will slump. You will go cross-eyed and nearly crash.