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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

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  •  
    J 07-03-10
    J 07-03-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    39
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    "Master storyteller"

    Easy read. But the book is juicy with great information. I found a new hero in this book (Caballo Blanco) I wish I could live the way he does.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert Scribner 06-24-10 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    20
    4
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    "Absolute Joy"

    This book is an absolute pleasure to listen to. It is fun, informative and extremely well read. What more can you ask for?

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joel Mesa, AZ, United States 06-17-10
    Joel Mesa, AZ, United States 06-17-10
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    7
    2
    Overall
    "I hate shoe companies"

    I read this book and really thought I could walk out my door and run for 12 hours straight. I loved it. I always wondered if shoes really made much of a difference. They actually make things worse. Your foot has evolved to take the shock of your foot hitting the ground and if you put on an expensive shoe with good "support" it transfers all of that shock up to your hips and knees. I went out and bought some barefoot running shoes almost immediately after reading the book. I have the Disney Half marathon coming up in September. This book really motivates you.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shukhrat Martinez, GA, United States 06-05-10
    Shukhrat Martinez, GA, United States 06-05-10 Member Since 2013
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    "Original point of view"

    Unexpected point of view and good sense of humor. Some mistakes like fever in giardia - it is simply incorrect. Some chapters are slightly cheesy with quite good dollop of exageration. But in general it was true fun to read. I am glad that I have chosen this book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jon Aliso Viejo, CA, USA 05-21-10
    Jon Aliso Viejo, CA, USA 05-21-10 Member Since 2006
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    "Great story, unfortunate writing"

    The last thing you want to do with an awe-inspiring story of incredible endurance is to drown it in a sea of exaggeration. Mr. McDougall uses so much cliche and hyperbole that by the time the actual facts unfold you are too weary to fully appreciate them and they no longer stand in contrast to anything else that was written. Combine this with unnecessary salacious details and gratuitous obscenity and it becomes obvious that Mr. McDougall is mentally stuck writing for the eighteen year old consumer of Men's Health magazine and not the larger public audience that this book could have reached.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Zephyr Roseville, CA, USA 04-05-10
    Zephyr Roseville, CA, USA 04-05-10
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    1
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    "loved it"

    I love this book- storytelling, ancient cultures, human evolution, athletes, biomechanics, & more! Inspiring.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Monica Gilbert, AZ, US Minor Outlying Islands 03-26-10
    Monica Gilbert, AZ, US Minor Outlying Islands 03-26-10
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
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    "Very entertaining and informational, a great book!"

    I listened to this book while running instead of music. It was great! It inspired me to run more thoughtfully. Not only did I enjoy the story, I learned a lot about improving my own running. Great book. I've been recommending it to all my friends, runners or not.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chris Ottawa, Ontario, Canada 03-26-10
    Chris Ottawa, Ontario, Canada 03-26-10
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    "Inspiring!"

    I absolutely loved this book. I've been dabbling in 10km and half-marathon runs, but this book has opened my eyes - and brain to a whole new attitude towards running. The chapter on barefoot running is fantastic.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Heidi Napa, CA, United States 03-26-10
    Heidi Napa, CA, United States 03-26-10 Member Since 2007
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    "Wonderful"

    I loved this book. I listened to it twice, just to catch all of the details, then researched some of the information myself. The author does a great job of marrying his research information with characters and a plot. There is enough education, and history to keep your mind churning, but there is also humor, friendship, love and loss, peppered throughout. I highly recommend this to anyone who once was, is, or has a desire to ever be a runner.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    K. Russell 03-15-10
    K. Russell 03-15-10 Member Since 2015
    ratings
    REVIEWS
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    "Got me running again"

    Revived great memories of running when I was younger; so much so that I'm now running again and loving it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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