Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen

Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen

Book rating: 03 Paperback Vintage Books

By (author) Christopher McDougall

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  • Publisher: Vintage Books
  • Format: Paperback | 304 pages
  • Dimensions: 130mm x 201mm x 25mm | 340g
  • Publication date: 29 March 2011
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 0307279189
  • ISBN 13: 9780307279187
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Sales rank: 906

Product description

An epic adventure that began with one simple question: Why does my foot hurt? Isolated by Mexico's deadly Copper Canyons, the blissful Tarahumara Indians have honed the ability to run hundreds of miles without rest or injury. In a riveting narrative, award-winning journalist and often-injured runner Christopher McDougall sets out to discover their secrets. In the process, he takes his readers from science labs at Harvard to the sun-baked valleys and freezing peaks across North America, where ever-growing numbers of ultra-runners are pushing their bodies to the limit, and, finally, to a climactic race in the Copper Canyons that pits America's best ultra-runners against the tribe. McDougall's incredible story will not only engage your mind but inspire your body when you realize that you, indeed all of us, were born to run.

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Author information

Christopher McDougall is a former war correspondent for the Associated Press and is now a contributing editor for "Men's Health." A three-time National Magazine Award finalist, he has written for "Esquire," "The New York Times Magazine," "Outside," "Men's Journal," and "New York." He does his own running among the Amish farms around his home in rural Pennsylvania. Christopher McDougall is available for select readings and lectures. To inquire about a possible appearance, please contact Random House Speakers Bureau at rhspeakers@randomhouse.com or visit www.rhspeakers.com.

Customer reviews

By Richard Danks 29 Mar 2012 3

There were several themes running through this book, none of which fully achieved its purpose. As a result the book was somewhat disjointed and confusing, darting from one theme to another without fully exploring the previous theme. Commentary on the races was flimsy, as was explanation on minimalist running. A few explanatory pictures or drawings would have made a big difference. A mud map of the location would have provided some background as the the course. There were many claims made and quotes given with minimal source references or bibliography. Some photographs would have put a face to the characters.
The author obviously has a lot of good things to say, but in his endeavour to include everything, the book lacks focus and clarity.
Overall the book was interesting but did not live up to its potential.

Review quote

"A tale so mind-blowing as to be the stuff of legend." --"The Denver Post" "McDougall's book reminded me of why I love to run." --Bill Rodgers, "San Francisco Chronicle " "Fascinating. . . . Thrilling. . . . An operatic ode to the joys of running." --"The Washington Post" "It's a great book. . . . A really gripping read. . . .Unbelievable story . . . a really phenomenal book." --Jon Stewart on "The Daily Show" "One of the most entertaining running books ever." --Amby Burfoot, Runnersworld.com "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" "McDougall recounts his quest to understand near superhuman ultra-runners with adrenaline pumped writing, humor and a distinct voice...he never lets go from his impassioned mantra that humans were born to run." --NPR ""Born to Run" is a fascinating and inspiring true adventure story, based on humans pushing themselves to the limits. It's destined to become a classic."-Sir Ranulph Fiennes, author of "Mad, Bad and Dangerous To Know" "Equal parts hilarity, explanation and earnestness--whisks the reader along on a compelling dash to the end, and along the way captures the sheer joy that a brisk run brings." --"Science News" ""Born to Run" is funny, insightful, captivating, and a great and beautiful discovery." --Lynne Cox, author of "Swimming to Antarctica" "A page-turner, taking the reader on an epic journey in search of the world's greatest distance runners in an effort to uncover the secrets of their endurance." "--The Durango Herald" "Driven by an intense yet subtle curiosity, Christopher McDougall gamely treads across the continent to pierce the soul and science of long-distance running."--Hampton Sides, author of "Blood and Thunder" and "Ghost Soldiers"