Matt Long has been a competitive athlete his entire life. As a member of his high school basketball team, he was required to run in the Brooklyn/Queens X-country Championships. With no prior running experience, he finished fifth for his school, completing the race in uncomfortable high top sneakers. At Iona College, he competed in their Division I basketball program for which a high level of fitness was mandatory.
Strength and endurance became especially paramount in his life after college when he became a New York City Firefighter. It was around this time he took up distance running and began competing in Ironman triathlons, finishing his first Ironman race in 2005. He then set his sights on qualifying for the Boston marathon by running the ING NYC marathon later that year. With hard work, dedication and persistence, he trimmed 30 minutes off his personal best to run a 3:13, qualifying for the 2006 Boston event.
On the morning of December 22, 2005, Matt Long’s life changed in an instant. He was cycling to work in the early morning when he was struck and run over by a 20-ton bus making an illegal turn. The injuries he sustained pushed him to the brink of death. He received 68 units of blood in the first 40 hours after the accident and spent 5 months in the hospital. More than 40 operations later, he finally began a grueling rehabilitation regime. Matt found the psychological consequences of the accident nearly as hard to process as the physical severities. His doctor had told him he’d be lucky to ever walk again without a cane.
Matt fought through months of fear, despair, loneliness, and intense physical and psychological pain to regain the life he once had. His recovery was a miraculous one which included everything from learning to walk again and, a mere three years later, running in the 2008 New York City Marathon. “Running saved my life,” Matt says, and his determination and perseverance has turned him into a symbol of hope and recovery for countless others.
Matt’s story was covered in a wildly popular article in the March 2009 edition of Runner’s World magazine. Matt has since chronicled his life and journey both before and after the accident in his book The Long Run, released in October 2010. Matt has also started the I WILL Foundation which provides coaching, training and financial support to help people overcome adversity and challenges caused by illness or traumatic injury.
Matt’s heartfelt presentation takes listeners through the ups and downs he’s faced throughout his life and is sure to inspire audiences across America. He currently resides in New York City.
Matt Long, elite athlete & author of The Long Run, is available exclusively through IMG Speakers bureau for speaking engagements. Matt Long is also available for panel discussions, leadership summits, and motivational speeches. Please contact IMG Speakers at 212-774-6735 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on booking Matt Long.
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Matt was the perfect choice for this event. His presentation was off the charts. He is truly an inspiration. Thanks for everything!
-- Met Life
The event was a great success! The room was completely filled and I received many compliments about the event and how motivating a speaker he was. Thanks for all your help!
-- NYU Medical Center
Matt was awesome. Not only is he a great speaker, but phenomenal with the kids. I hope he enjoyed his time here as much as we enjoyed having him.
-- Cardigan Mountain School
As a sales executive, I have lead many sales meetings over the past 30 years. I have had some very good guest speakers present to my sales teams but Matt Long was by far the most inspirational and memorable of them all. His humble and humorous approach makes it a joy to be in his audience. His down to earth and honest depiction of his experience, strength and hope is very moving and uplifting. Matt is the real deal.
-- SunGard Availability Service
In the Spring of 2010 we held a Northeast Regional Sales meeting and were fortunate to have Matt Long as one of our guest speakers. His story was an inspiration to all who attended. He is a straight from the heart speaker who makes a compelling case for what you can do if you set your mind to a Goal. Matt tells it like it is and he had everyone laughing and crying at the same time. When we surveyed the attendees after the two day meeting Matt came out as the number one speaker by far.
-- Arthur J. Gallagher Risk Management Services