Endure: Mind, Body and the Curiously Elastic Limits of Human Performance

Narrated by: Robert G. Slade
Length: 11 hrs and 9 mins
Categories: Sports, Other
4.5 out of 5 stars (39 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

How high or far or fast can humans go? And what about individual potential: what defines a person's limits? From running a two-hour marathon to summiting Mount Everest, we're fascinated by the extremes of human endurance, constantly testing both our physical and psychological limits.

In Endure, Alex Hutchinson, PhD, reveals why our individual limits may be determined as much by our heads and hearts as by our muscles. He presents an overview of science's search for understanding human fatigue, from crude experiments with electricity and frogs' legs to sophisticated brain imaging technology. Going beyond the traditional mechanical view of human limits, he instead argues that a key element in endurance is how the brain responds to distress signals - whether heat or cold or muscles screaming with lactic acid - and reveals that we can train to improve brain response.

An elite distance runner himself, Hutchinson takes us to the forefront of the new sports psychology - brain electrode jolts, computer-based training, subliminal messaging - and presents startling new discoveries enhancing the performance of athletes today, showing us how anyone can utilize these tactics to bolster their own performance - and get the most out of their bodies.

©2018 Alex Hutchinson (P)2018 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic Reviews

"This book is amazing!" (Malcolm Gladwell)
"If you want to gain insight into the mind of great athletes, adventurers, and peak performers then prepare to be enthralled by Alex Hutchinson's Endure." (Bear Grylls)
"Anyone who has ever felt exhausted, whether from heat or cold or altitude or pain or simply a loss of will, is going to find their own experience in this book." (David Epstein, author of The Sports Gene)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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unfortunately I've already read this book

I have read this before, it's a good read but added nothing to my knowledge of the subject.

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A very good book with lots to ponder.

Instead of offering absolute answers, the book guides and makes one curious to explore and read further, and to expand ones own thinking and hopefully performances. I thought it very good. Good production, clear and easy to listen to, but one thing I have to mention, is to check and get the pronunciation of the surnames right! So irritating, come on, it’s not that hard. Can recommend the book despite this though.

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The best overview of endurance

This was the best overview of endurance in general, very well written, fun and a clever combining of the science and real life stories. Historically and academically interesting. A must read and will be my bible on the issue. Will read again!

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-10-18

Great read (listen)

After recent doping allegations, this restored some of my faith in human performance. It is amazing what the human mind and body can achieve.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Kingsley P.
  • 10-05-19

An encapsulating journey of endurance

As a Sport and Exercise scholar, beginning my academic pathway further into the world of physiology and the psychology behind it, I utterly loved each chapter of this book. It was broken down into divisions of endurance exploring what can effect performance supported by history & peer reviewed science. I like the curious venture of Hutchinson and believe he highlighted some important topics. There’s definitely a dominance in the omnipresence of Noakes and his role in our understanding of performance; it-is what it is I suppose. All - On - All a great read (Listen), which reminds me to highlight that the spoken ‘performance’ was great and easy to consume.

1 person found this helpful

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  • I Okoli
  • 09-08-19

Good Book...Learn to Pronounce People's Names

Author is great, but narrator can learn to pronounce running legends names properly. Pre-reading prep?

1 person found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • PCurran
  • 01-21-19

academic book

A good book but not what I expected. very academically focused. hard to stay motivated.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Miss R C Ingham
  • 02-22-20

Fascinating and thought provoking

Relates to all avenues of life - not just physical exertion. A fascinating listen.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Udam
  • 12-24-19

Well researched book

Love the content of the book. Very educational and author have pulled in all leading cutting edge research material to take us through a journey.

My only nail bitter is that the mispronunciations of the athletes names. especially Eluid Kipchoge. But if you overlook this.. the book is awesome

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  • Plamen
  • 08-23-19

I really liked that one

A very good book. It doesn't pretend to be more than it presents. It's an overview of human physiological abilities. Or at least what we know so for of them. It presents many great stories and good science, as well as possible doors for improvement. I this the latter is the most important part of the book. If you are interested in the field and have the means, why not try some of the suggestion that were implied.

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  • LC
  • 07-01-19

Exploring the brain and body contributors to physical endurance

An interesting review of what we know so far about the factors contributing to human physical performance, and what we still don’t know.
I found it interesting how much training, pushing and deceiving the brain contributes to results.

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  • Nick Elliott
  • 06-12-19

Wow. Informative and interesting.

Sometimes got lost in the weeds of the detail, but the details proves such depth of understanding and research by the author. really well written, great stories intertwined and perfect in audible. I found myself quoting theories and facts in so many conversations I have!! so applicable and interesting if you have even the slightest interest in sport and/or one's body.

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  • Will Arnold
  • 06-09-19

Thought provoking

Fantastic book and extremely well written. Great read and couldn't put it down. The author showed a huge understand and fully researched the subject. recommended.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 05-26-20

Almost perfect

some name pronounciation errors are very noticeable which can get very annoying at times. overall, an amazing book and narrator did a good job.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-09-19

Great story. Terrible narration.

very interesting. Lots of things to think about while I'm running. Slightly let down by a woefully bad narrator who cannot seem to pronounce a single name correctly. Once you get over that the content is very good. Maybe buy the book instead...

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  • Emily Williams
  • 05-17-19

Well researched

Finds a good balance between anecdotes and scientific research. Author also points out potential biases and pitfalls of prior research. Uses good research to back up points made, but often doesn't manage to tie that research back into the narrative - instead leaving a 'cliffhanger' after describing a piece of research.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-20-19

Fantastic!

As a runner and coach, I found this book incredibly insightful. Sad when it was finished. I will be buying the hard copy because there is so much to unpack. Brilliant!

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  • Amanda
  • 09-24-18

Maybe a good read but not a great listen.

The narrator let this book down with constant mispronunciations of names and places, like Eliud Kipchoge.. aka the most famous & accomplished marathoner of our time. Five seconds research.

1 person found this helpful

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  • max
  • 09-09-18

Storytelling meets science. A great book.

Endure was a very enjoyable way to absorb what would otherwise be very dense content. Alex Hutchinson’s skill to intertwine story telling with science if very engaging.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-27-18

good non biased opinion of human performance

shows a good knowledge of past and furture endeavors of the human body and what the mind is capable of when it is influenced by internal and external changes

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  • Rosie
  • 08-07-18

Great listening.

I loved it, will be listening again to pick up the bits I missed. So much interesting information.