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
"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)
Great story and great narration!
I ran longer than planned this morning as I listened to the story and began to realize there is so much more to accomplish by tuning in to what my body is telling me.
I couldn't stop until the book was over!
This is the best book I have ever listened to on audible.com. I listened to it twice in a row.
Scott setting the record in the ultra distance run in Death Valley
Jen Shelton, Bone Head Billy, The White Horse
after listening for a while, i cant help but drop the book, and hit the trail, and jog for hours. It made me laugh, cry and understand myself to a much deeper degree. We really are born to run.
if you run, you will love this book. if you dont, i think you will still find it great. I am biased. I run.
the descriptions of wanting to run, and the feeling the superatheletes have when they run.
finishing the race.
I liked learnnng where the new 5 finger running gloves came from!
I listen to audio books while running and this book was inspiring. I'll never be an ultra-runner, but I did adjust my form and found more joy in my workouts. The book is filled with interesting characters and the crazy predicaments into which they get themselves. It also contains fun facts and theories about the evolution of man, the place of running in our evolution and in world cultures today. I enjoyed this book much more than I thought I would and recommend it to all runners and want-to-be runners out there.
Draws you in from the beginning. My only criticism is that- as has been said elsewhere- McDougall goes a little off track trying to be gonzo at certain points. Otherwise is it's fantastic.
The human achievements recounted in this book are overall absolutely amazing and sometimes even difficult to believe or comprehend.
I thought certain portions dragged a little bit, but overall I found this an engaging and informative piece. If you are a runner or at all interested in running, the stories in this book will thrill you.
This book definitely inspired me to give barefoot running a go. I love the idea of human beings having evolved to run long distances. Having studied anthropology in undergrad, I can guarantee that their are many biological anthropologists out there who would entirely disagree with the author's conclusions, but this is still a very interesting perspective.
Parts of the book are laid on a bit thick, however. The author makes the claim at one point that the obesity and heart disease epidemic plaguing America can all be traced back to the running shoe companies. He says that the reason Americans don't work out is due to that fact that running shoes put so much stress on the body. I agree that running shoes might not necessarily be the best idea, but I don't think that is why people don't exercise.
This inspiring book has all of the above but is also filled with many interesting asides. You don't need to be a runner to enjoy it, but the book might turn you into one.
The ending was the best. The unfolding of the community built between racers, and the pulling together of people was very inspiring.
I hope this event never becomes commercialised by a film.
From the very beginning, Born to Run kept me listening and itching to get go back to my car to listen to more! I have recommended it to many friends, runners and non-runners alike. McDougall is a great story teller!
I +1 Books.
I will not tell this book is amazing and you should read that. I will tell you something else. In this book you'll find amazing story with some philisophical aspects, history of running and the real passion. Scott Jurek always was my idol. Now I love him :)
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