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Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen Audiobook

Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen

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Publisher's Summary

Full of incredible characters, amazing athletic achievements, cutting-edge science, and, most of all, pure inspiration, Born to Run is an epic adventure that began with one simple question: Why does my foot hurt?

In search of an answer, Christopher McDougall sets off to find a tribe of the world's greatest distance runners and learn their secrets, and in the process shows us that everything we thought we knew about running is wrong.

Isolated by the most savage terrain in North America, the reclusive Tarahumara Indians of Mexico's deadly Copper Canyons are custodians of a lost art. For centuries they have practiced techniques that allow them to run hundreds of miles without rest and chase down anything from a deer to an Olympic marathoner while enjoying every mile of it. Their superhuman talent is matched by uncanny health and serenity, leaving the Tarahumara immune to the diseases and strife that plague modern existence.

With the help of Caballo Blanco, a mysterious loner who lives among the tribe, the author was able not only to uncover the secrets of the Tarahumara but also to find his own inner ultra-athlete, as he trained for the challenge of a lifetime: a 50-mile race through the heart of Tarahumara country pitting the tribe against an odd band of Americans, including a star ultramarathoner, a beautiful young surfer, and a barefoot wonder.

With a sharp wit and wild exuberance, McDougall takes us from the high-tech science labs at Harvard to the sun-baked valleys and freezing peaks across North America, where ever-growing numbers of ultrarunners are pushing their bodies to the limit, and, finally, to the climactic race in the Copper Canyons.

Born to Run is that rare book that will not only engage your mind but inspire your body when you realize that the secret to happiness is right at your feet, and that you, indeed all of us, were born to run.

©2009 Knopf; (P)2009 Random House

What the Critics Say

"Equal parts quest, physiology treatise, and running history....[McDougall] seeks to learn the secrets of the Tarahumara the old-fashioned way: He tracks them down....The climactic race reads like a sprint....It simply makes you want to run." (Outside Magazine)
"Hugely entertaining. . . . One of the most joyful and engaging books about running to appear for many years." (The Irish Times)
A terrific ride, recommended for any athlete." (Kirkus)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.6 (7784 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Carly Gilbert, AZ, United States 01-20-14
    Carly Gilbert, AZ, United States 01-20-14 Member Since 2016
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    "Amazing and Easy Read!"
    Would you listen to Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen again? Why?

    A thoroughly well-written and inspiring read for the person who feels the athlete in their soul. I couldn't stop listening to it …the storytelling is touching and endlessly intriguing! I listened to it on my runs, on my way to the office and on 5-minute drives - whatever time I could squeeze in. Guaranteed I will read it again in a few years when I need the motivation again!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Holly Ashton, IL, United States 01-11-14
    Holly Ashton, IL, United States 01-11-14 Member Since 2013
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    "Great book"

    A great listen. This was a very intriguing book I listened to while running. I'm very happy to say it inspired me and brought many a smile to my face during my runs. At times, McDougall stops in the middle of a story, to tell another story which helps provide further background and detail to the original story. Sometimes I forgot there was an original, unfinished story to begin with until he returned to it. Of course, part of this could have been from the fact that I was running and getting tired. Either way, I got so much enjoyment out of it the first time, I will listen to this book again and suggest you do, too.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    nicolas LAssomption, QC, Canada 12-11-13
    nicolas LAssomption, QC, Canada 12-11-13 Member Since 2016
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    "Mind blown despite 11 hours of superlatives"
    What did you love best about Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen?

    The portion of the story about the race was interesting but I thought the most interesting part of the book was by far the scientific explanations as well as theories as to why we, humans, are born to run.


    Any additional comments?

    The story part about the race with the Tarahumara and Cabayo Blanco is interesting but I thought the author pressed a little hard on the superlatives. You will encounter a mention about something being the most _something_ in the whole world every two sentences, which got old pretty quick for me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Thomas Santa Maria , CA, USA 12-07-13
    Thomas Santa Maria , CA, USA 12-07-13 Member Since 2011
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    "50 Mile + races in bare feet? Unblievable"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Yes, because I learned that there really is no limit to what the human body can endure


    If you’ve listened to books by Christopher McDougall before, how does this one compare?

    This is the first one. If flowed pretty well.


    What about Fred Sanders’s performance did you like?

    Yes, but it was hard for me to listen for more than 15 to 20 minutes at a time.


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    Probably not. It was interesting but not to the point where I would go see it in the movie theaters.


    Any additional comments?

    After reading the book I ended up buying a pair of minimum running shoes to see if it will improve my running performance.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael Italy 11-29-13
    Michael Italy 11-29-13 Member Since 2015
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    "Fun read, Yet my BullSh#t detector Redlined !"
    Would you try another book from Christopher McDougall and/or Fred Sanders?

    McDougall no. Sanders yes. I really dont go for fiction and I honestly had to check twice if it was non fiction. It reminded me of my drunk uncles fishing stories. Colorful, fun and creative and based on some real facts yet ginned up for dramatic sake I am a life long runner and was excited to to read a book about distance running. The story is melded with some science and history of running. Characters were well developed. The non linear writing style appeals to me. Much of the book seems to be promoting minimal running shoes and the copper canyon running event.

    McDougall references science and running experts to promote his idea, and cites resume and accomplishments of individuals. Then he goes on about Nike being the evil of running and in particular founder / coach bill Bowerman. He denigrates Bowerman as sort of a greed motivated coach who knew little about running. This was very dishonest journalism regardless of whether or not you love or hate Nike or what you think of Bowerman. as for Bowerman coach at University of Oregon his accomplishments stand for themselves, he is a snippet of what McDugall conveniently omitted. "Over his career, he trained 31 Olympic athletes, 51 All-Americans, 12 American record-holders, 24 NCAA champions and 16 sub-4 minute milers"

    I really liked much of the book, it gives a very limited perspective of Ultra running. And the use of Hyperbole is just too much for me to give this more than 3 stars.

    Im sure it will want to go out and run and some valuable tools and knowledge can be gleaned from the book.

    Reminds me of 3 cups of tea, kind of felt sad that the author couldnt write the story with Authenticity.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    The story of Human Language


    Which scene was your favorite?

    the south African guy following the tribe about doing research.


    Could you see Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    yep...of course. it would appeal to anyone who bought Shape up shoes. made for TV .


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ryan South Jordan, UT, United States 11-20-13
    Ryan South Jordan, UT, United States 11-20-13 Member Since 2013
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    "Lame book about people who run"
    What disappointed you about Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen?

    What could be a more boring book than one about people who run super long distances? Don't buy this book unless you are a runner with an unusual fascination with other people's running feats.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Christopher McDougall again?

    Sure


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    Narration was okay. Would be nice if the narrator could mimic voices.


    What character would you cut from Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen?

    NA


    Any additional comments?

    I lost 11 hours of my life that I'll never get back after listening to this lame book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    scott Mississauga, Ontario, Canada 10-11-13
    scott Mississauga, Ontario, Canada 10-11-13 Member Since 2016
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    "Put this on your IPod and Go for a Run"

    Bought this book to use credits. Got one of my favorite books of all time. Part collection of some of the eccentric characters that seem to be prevalent in ultra marathoning, part ultra marathon history, part lesson in the science of running. Stars of the show are the Tarahumaras of the Mexican Sierra Madre, a close community famous for running and their out of control corn beer infused parties. Barefoot Ted, Czech running revolutionary Emiliano Zapata, Billy and Jen, the hard partying former lifeguard couple, and Caballo Blanco are other characters that make this book a fun read/ listen

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joe CLAYTON, NC, United States 10-10-13
    Joe CLAYTON, NC, United States 10-10-13 Member Since 2011
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    "Loved every minute of it."
    If you could sum up Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen in three words, what would they be?

    As a former runner, I related to everything in this book. It has modivated me to get back out on the road. Very entertaining, very informative.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Biggs Detroit 10-09-13
    Biggs Detroit 10-09-13
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    "Eye-opening and thought-provoking"
    What did you love best about Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen?

    What I loved best was how the author interspersed the stories of the "Running People" with his own personal athletic history, evolution, biology, and the history of modern athletic consumer products. This book was so fascinating to me, I have been driving my husband and friends crazy by repeatedly sharing things I've learned from the book.
    I am not an avid runner, but it certainly inspired me to want to take off my shoes and run through the woods.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shannon 09-23-13
    Shannon 09-23-13
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    "Great Mix of Story Telling, History and Science"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen to be better than the print version?

    I have not read the print version of the book, but there are not charts referenced or a lot of statistics to come back to so I don't think the print version would be better or worse than the print version. I found the book so motivational and interesting that I listened to it while running, which would not be possible for me in print version.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The book did a very nice job of mixing in several different stories as well as research information. Informative and entertaining.


    What does Fred Sanders bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    The narrator does a good job. He differentiates voices enough so it is easy to differentiate who is speaking and gives them a little extra character.


    If you could give Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen a new subtitle, what would it be?

    It's a long enough title already. Doesn't need another one :).


    Any additional comments?

    This was a great book. I have been a jogger / marathoner for 5 years and this book has inspired me in a way other articles and books have not to hit the pavement more frequently and feel better about the time I devote to running.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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