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)
I had read this book before and wanted to listen to it as I went on long runs. Fred Sanders did a wonderful job narrating the book. He pronounced the Spanish words perfectly (I am a Spanish teacher, so that was pleasing)! He had an excellent voice to listen to. And, of course, Christopher McDougall is a wonderful author and this is one of my favorite books. A MUST-READ! Too valuable of information not to learn. I highly recommend this audiobook! You will not regret it, especially if you are a runner or are considering becoming one.
I read this book first and liked it so much that I decided to download it and listen to it while I did my long runs training for a marathon, and it definitely changed the way I feel about long runs forever! The runners in the book are so fascinating that I actually had to google them all to make sure they are "real people" and not just some very entertaining fictional characters. It has great background information, leading up to the ultimate, final race at the end that I never wanted to be over. I could have read about their races forever. But the best part is probably their journey to even get to that race in one piece to begin with. A great read, incredibly entertainning while being informational.
If you're hungry for simplicity, purity and a healthy path, this book may turn out to be more than entertainment! After discovering Michael Pollan, Dr. Mark Hyman & barefoot running, this book provided as much blueprint as story. While few will be tempted to jump off the edge of the world and live in paleolithic purity, the picture McDougall draws is compelling, as more and more elements of our modern world turn out to be false or unsustainably destructive. Besides, this book is a hell of a fun ride!
Very exciting! I couldn't wait to get back to this book everytime I had to quit. This was very well written and would easily engage a non-runner. Stories throughout make this book very interesting as well as when the book starts touching on the science of running, which is again backed up by more stories. I will be listening to this one again shortly.
When it comes to my books, I'm not terribly snobby or caught up in details of the author's style. What holds me is the strength of the story and passion of the author. This is hands down one of the best best books I've ever had the pleasure of listening to.
A friend recommended this book and said, "Read it; it will change your life." I took his advise and read it. I'm still fat and slow, but I'm running and, for the first time since I was a little kid, having fun doing it. Excellent book!
Michael D. Taylor
As a very amateur runner, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The story was captivating, but I also found McDougall's discussions of shoes, running theory, and interpersonal relationships engaging. I didn't appreciate the frequent use of profanity, surely part of McDougall's efforts to make the book "realistic", but totally unnecessary.
I listened to this book non-stop (at every opportunity) until it was done. I was so fascinated! The story was great, the history was great, the facts were interesting. It's a motivational book and appropriate for all readers, especially those with an interest in running.
An Information Systems Analyst involved in setting up new businesses.
This book has caused me to rethink the my entire book rating system. This book serves as a repository for running related science, history and motivating stories with great characters. I have read most of the books on running in Audible now, and this stands ahead of the pack.
This is THE book that every runner, especially new runners should read. In a world of 5 star books this is a 6. This book has taught me more than every other running book combined.
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.
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