Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen by Christopher McDougall
Jeff’s thoughts: I think for both Karen and me, the journey toward eating a plant-based diet feels like a journey of enlightenment. If you pay attention, and as you wake up to new ways of thinking and feeling, you’ll notice little things along the way which encourage you or help you course correct. While Born to Run is primarily a book about natural running (which Karen and I both think is awesome) it also presents interesting tidbits about food, what compels us, how and why we live the way we do, etc. It remains one of my most favorite books of all time. McDougall has a wonderful way of telling a story, presenting science, and provoking thought. I was introduced to Scott Jurek through McDougall. His story and book are great as well.
Karen’s thoughts: This is definitely one of my all time favorite books. Before I read it, I ran in regular running shoes and this book inspired me to go minimal. I’ve been forever thankful. It also introduced me to chia seeds, Caballo Blanco and Scott Jurek. It is an absolutely amazing story. For the first time ever in my life (that I can remember), I finished this book and then I read it again. It’s really THAT good. Whether you are a runner or not, I highly recommend this book.
I had the pleasure of meeting Christopher McDougall when he came through Boulder. He was signing everyone’s books and I walked up to him and started talking to him. A few minutes into the conversation I realized I was standing there having a conversation with the author of one of my all time favorite books! I suddenly felt a little star struck and got tongue tied. 🙂
Here’s a picture of what he wrote:
I should have had my picture taken with him. Next time!
Description from Amazon.com
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 fifty-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.