If you've read the book, then you already know how much I came to admire Adam Peruta in the course of writing it. He's one of the most reflective, introspective athletes I ever spoke with. All the athletes had more than a few interesting thoughts. It's hard not to when you run farther than your three crew members combined and the only consistent company you have through 52.2 miles of lonely lava fields is your own mind. But Adam was special. He hadn't thought more than the others. But as a college professor his mind wandered in different directions.
Learning isn't just about what we experience. It's about what we take from it. Most of us are like sponges. We absorb what happens to us and process it, but if something trickles by we miss it. Adam is more like a vacuum cleaner. He goes out there and actively pursues every drop. He'll be the first to tell you that there are athletes that swim, bike, and run harder than him. But nobody out-thinks Adam, I'm sure of that.
You couldn't ask for a better person to give a TED Talk on what Ultraman taught him.