Rob Murphy

March 20, 2019

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Salt Lake City,Ut,

Member Since:

Feb 11, 2010



Goal Type:


Running Accomplishments:

I had some success in high school and college. Winner 1985 Rod Dixon Run 

Had a fair amount of success as a Masters runner for most of my 40s. 

Short-Term Running Goals:

Have fun, not get fat, stay fit.

Long-Term Running Goals:

 Keep running in some fashion.


I teach AP European History and other courses at Alta High School. I coached the track and cross country teams at Alta for 16 years.

Married, two kids - Abby and Andy

My Twitter  @murphy_rob

Miles:This week: 15.00 Month: 125.35 Year: 377.35
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Rob's book notes...

So for my summer reading list I've decided to re-read three books that have had a great impact on how I think about history.

A Bright Shining Lie: John Paul Vann and America in Vietnam by Neil Sheehan

Stilwell and the American Experience in China 1941-1945 by Barbara Tuchman

Lincoln by David Herbert Donald

All three of these books are really about much more than their titles imply. They are literally self contained educations. You feel smarter when you're done.

The first time I read A Bright Shining Lie I was blown away by this John Paul Vann guy, just filled with admiration to the point where I think I'd decided to name my first born after him. Then you get to the point halfway through when he sleeps with the 14 year old babysitter. I was devastated! But if you want to understand Vietnam, there is no better book.

Lincoln is unique among Lincoln bios in that Donald doesn't start out assuming Lincoln will end up an icon. You come to appreciate how his path to greatness was anything but assured.

Tuchman's Stilwell is a little dated and suffers from the fact that Tuchman was writing about World War II in 1970 and her judgement is clouded at times by her feelings towards the war in Vietnam. At times she paints with a broad brush. But as a biography of Stilwell and an introduction to America's complex relationship with China, it's the best.

PM: Two continuous hours of warm, dry, windy gully running in both the upper and lower gully. No watch. Garmin broke. I'm giving myself 15 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00Weight: 0.00Calories: 0.00
From Jason D on Wed, May 21, 2014 at 17:15:33 from

I can see why there are three books on the list. Huge! But I guess historians are by methodology not very brief.

I'd like to take a look at the Vietnam book. I think the only one I have read was Achilles in Vietnam by Jonathan Shay. Interesting discussion/application of the Illiad to Vietnam and PTSD.

From steve ash on Wed, May 21, 2014 at 17:22:29 from

I'm intrigued by 'Lincoln" I think I'l go and seek it out for my next book. Any other thoughts about it?

From Steve on Thu, May 22, 2014 at 19:49:27 from

I'll get Stillwell. Lincoln was OK.

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