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Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen | [Christopher McDougall]

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

Why we think it’s a great listen: Want to join the “superhumans”? Luckily you don’t have to run to catch up with them, thanks to McDougall’s and Sanders’ inspiring (and motivating) journey through history, science, physiology, health, entertaining characters and unlikely friendships. Full of incredible characters, amazing athletic achievements, cutting-edge science, and, most of all, pure inspiration, Born to Run is an epic adventure.
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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 (5880 )
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  •  
    Israel Chassell, MI, United States 07-10-11
    Israel Chassell, MI, United States 07-10-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Inspirational & Educational"

    This book is awesome! The narrative style of writing, along with the good research the author used makes you enjoy a good story while you get smarter at the same time. I don't agree with everything the author says, but I give partial credit to this book for running my first half marathon and making homemade running sandals for my boys.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ed Live Oak, FL, United States 07-04-11
    Ed Live Oak, FL, United States 07-04-11 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    15
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    7
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    "Left wing nut"

    If you're a left wing, business bashing, why can't we all just live in harmony type person, you'll love the book. I found the content nauseating...cannot believe I actually finished it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kalvis Meiers 06-14-11 Listener Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Boaring... I have wasted 2 hours of my time."

    I have wasted 2 hours of my time with that book. I do not see anything "amazing", "essential for runners", "inspiring" etc. in the first 2 hours of the book. First hours of the book do not contain any scientific facts or valuable ideas; the book is just a fairytale full of mysticism.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John Parker, CO, United States 06-09-11
    John Parker, CO, United States 06-09-11
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    REVIEWS
    5
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    "Ready to run"

    I was a ten mile a day runner until I had kids and then suffered an injury, listening to this story gives me inspiration to try to build up my miles again!!!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kyle Seattle, WA 06-02-11
    Kyle Seattle, WA 06-02-11 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A gem"

    This was a gem of writing and storytelling. I am not a runner, but I savored every second of this book. A+ writing. A+ narration. A+ story. It doesn't get much better. If you tend to like Bill Bryson's books, this will most likely appeal to you.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gregory Clifton Park, NY, United States 05-15-11
    Gregory Clifton Park, NY, United States 05-15-11 Member Since 2015
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    "I've always run, but now I'm a runner"

    This book has had a huge impact on my life. I've run in fits and starts throughout my life, usually to be slowed down or sidetracked by a range of injuries. Having converted to minimalist shoes and changed the way I've run after reading this about 2 years ago, I've been running faster and farther than I could have ever imagined. A phenomenal read...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Heath Lake Dallas, TX, United States 05-07-11
    Heath Lake Dallas, TX, United States 05-07-11 Member Since 2014
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    "Born to Run - A Trail Run of a Story"

    Much like a trail run, this book meanders through a winding path with ups and downs. I listened while running and while driving. I felt much closer to the story while running.

    There were so many stories that were part of the larger story that I would sometimes lose track of the characters. But, like losing my bearings on a trail, I would always find my way back to the main story.

    I found the sections about the dangers of running shoes intriguing. I had dismissed this before as a faddish notion but the author made me value this opinion and I intend to explore it further.

    The stories of ultrarunners were more interesting to me than the jaunts into shoe talk and biological history. The characters were varied and the build up to the end of the story seemed to come out of nowhere but had just the right pace and stride to enjoy the end of the journey.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nicholas Cranberry TWP, PA, United States 05-02-11
    Nicholas Cranberry TWP, PA, United States 05-02-11 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Really inspiring, well reasearched, good narrattor"

    Nothing can ruin an audio book faster than a bad narrator. The narrator in this book is excellent and engaging. I was very happy with this production.

    The book itself was very inspiring. I met Scot Jurek at Badwater a few years ago... what an awesome dude! If you like running, or history this is going to be a book you want to read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Martin Dorchester, MA, United States 04-17-11
    Martin Dorchester, MA, United States 04-17-11 Member Since 2014
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    "Great book! Terrible reader!"

    I was reading this book and couldn't put it down but had chores, so I downloaded the audiobook. The reader sounds like he's reading a children's book. This is a great book, not just for runners, but I'd stick with the paper copy.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jo Talent, OR, United States 04-17-11
    Jo Talent, OR, United States 04-17-11 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Way More Than I Expected!!"

    I have listened to this book over and over again - it is filled with information that will change the way you think about running & movement. It's a great story, but the facts about the history of running shoes has forever changed the way I think about - well, shoes. I no longer replace my hiking/running shoes at the recommended 500 miles - I literally wear them out now - and my feet are happy!! This book also introduced me to 5 fingers - best shoes ever!
    Just a great informative, information packed book!!
    I highly recommend it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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