The Tarahumara Indians are, quite literally, Born to Run. Living in isolation in Mexico's treacherous Copper Canyons, the Tarahumara tribe has discovered secrets which enable them to run for hundreds of miles without stopping to rest. As they travel these incredible distances, they are able to maintain high levels of speed, without being subject to the injuries which seem to so easily plague most American runners. Through studying the habits of the members of this tribe, Christopher McDougall has made discoveries which may reveal the secret to their endurance, and that secret flies in the face of everything modern science has told us about how to prevent running-related injuries.
McDougall advances a hypothesis in regard to human evolution called the endurance running hypothesis. This is the idea that humans were able to transition from the forests to the savannas by developing the ability to literally run down their prey by means of being able to go faster and longer than the animals they were hunting. He blames human attempts to improve upon our inherited ability with things like cushioned running shoes, pointing out that the Tarahumara wear only flat sandals. Anecdotal evidence (McDougall claims to have reduced his own injuries by copying the methods of the Tarahumara) coupled with scientific research, bear out McDougall's industry-defying claims, all shared in a quirky and clever way which is sure to keep you engaged.
Christopher McDougall is an American author and journalist, who found critical acclaim in 2009 with Born to Run. A graduate of Harvard, McDougall spent several years working for the Associated Press as a foreign correspondent, covering civil wars in Rwanda and Angola. A film based on the bestselling Born to Run is currently in production.
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.
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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 ultra-marathoner, 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 ultra-runners 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.