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Minxminnie

Born To Run

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I am quite astounded to find myself posting on a sports book.  :P

 

I was given this as a present, and it sat on the TBR for a while. I'm so glad I picked it up. 

 

It starts as a travel book - McDougall travels to Mexico to try to track down the reclusive Tarahumara tribe who are rumoured to be fabulous runners. He succeeds, and from there the book becomes as much about the science and history of ultrarunning as the Tarahumara, and he builds a case that, as a species, we are actually built to be runners.

The best thing about the book is the characterisation. He manages to bring a wide range of diverse characters vividly to life, even those whose stories are only marginally important.

 

I don't run, but this book almost convinced me to start in the way that he presents running as a delight rather than a gruelling chore. Though I don't think I'll be doing any of those hundred mile races any time soon.

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I have not read this, but my youngest son has (he is a runner) and he said it was one of the best books on this subject he's read so far.  Hope it's ok to post a second-hand review?

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I enjoyed this as an audiobook rather than a physical copy.  I am a runner, nothing impressive in terms of endurance or speed, and this book was very inspiring.  It's quite well known in running circles for inspiring the 'barefoot running' trend of recent years and I was a bit worried that it was going to be a manifesto for that, but the barefoot aspect was incidental to the main story.  I'm glad to hear that non-runners found much to enjoy, I thought it had a strong narrative and story of the race at the end was very compelling.  Another book about running that I have enjoyed recently is 'Running with the Kenyans' by Adharanan Finn, in which he tries to find out just what makes those Kenyan runners that we see winning all of the major marathons so incredibly fast.

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Just finished this book during a week long vacation.  It was really inspiring.  I am an off and on runner and started out as a kid running on the beach.  I loved it and could do it for hours but it didn't seem the same once I had to do it on harder dirt with shoes.  

 

As an adult I tried again and hurt my hip running on the treadmill.  This book made me want to do run again so I guess I'll have to head back outside in less intense shoes to get that feeling back that I had as a child, barefoot running the whole length of the beach without breaking too much of a sweat.

 

The story flows well.   I really didn't want to put the book down.  From the history of the Running People to their debut in Colorado, to the story of the Party Kids and most interestingly Caballo Blanco.  

 

There were a few chunks that seemed preachy earlier on in the book but after that the story is just so captivating.  I'm so glad I picked it up and read it.  I love the characters so much that I didn't even bother to find the pictures of the real life people featured in the book.

 

I'd highly recommend it to anyone with an interest in running and or anthropology. 

Edited by Biochemisty-n-Classics

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It would appear that another casualty of one of our crashes was my musings on Haruki Murakami's What I Talk About When I Talk About Running, which I'd also recommend to runners. 

 

I need some motivation to start running again, having pretty much stopped since my son was born at the end of 2013. Maybe I should start by reading this book.    

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It's always a good start on exercising to read a book about it.  If anyone suggest that it's better to just start running, you can use one of the phrases I mentioned in the weird words thread:  "I'm fixin' to start running."

 

Also, I can't believe Edgar is already that old!

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