Brick Eating's Reviews > Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen

Born to Run by Christopher McDougall
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May 16, 12

Read in May, 2012

“Born to Run” is a book written by Christopher Mcdougall. This book jumps around the main story and many other side stories describing the background of Ultra-running and the science of evolution behind it. It describes the struggle between a star student and his mentor, who was also his professor. The student, David, conducts a study where he ends up figuring out why humans would evolve from a strong, tough, and start hunter (neanderthal), to a weak and skinny homoerectus. Through years of back and forth studying and arguments, David realized that homoerectus evolved into a weaker version of neanderthals to become the best long distance animal in the world. Not “quick fast” but “endurance fast”. We evolved into a runner in order to run down animals until they died from heat exhaustion. There is no physical evidence from thousands of years ago because the animals death looked normal to the human eye. Unlike the neanderthals, who would leave behind hunting tools and arrowheads after their hunts. David concluded that humans were “Born to Run”.

What I liked about the book is how the author sets off onto a huge adventure through rugged terrain where many people die, in order to prove his doctors wrong about him not being able to run because “it’s just not for you”. He came in contact with a man who went by the name Cabello Blanco or “white horse”. Cabello was a strange man who seemed to be everywhere at the same time because he had an adulation for running. Cabello became friends with a hidden tribe in the Cooper Canyons through running in and out of their villages time and time again. This Impeccable hidden tribe, the Tarahumara, were possibly the best super athletes and ultra-runners ever to live. This tribe is known to run a marathon a day, commit no crime, and never get injured. The author learns how to run properly with Cabello and finally loses his injuries. Cabello plans a race between the best modern runners in the world against the greatest runners of all time, the Tarahumara. He gathers his best Tarahumara friends and the best ultra-marathoners in the world. The author decides to run in this stringent race to finally prove to himself and the doctors that he can run.
This book has affected me in a great way. I also had been getting many injuries through the two seasonal sports I play, Track and Cross Country, much like the author in the book. When this book started educating me on how the more expensive shoes you get the more risk you have of getting an injury, I had open ears. In the book there was a character named Barefoot Ted who believed it was better to run completely and naturally barefoot, or in some cases in a new brand of running “shoes” called Vibram Fivefingers. These vibrams look like toe socks that fit over all your toes. There is no support, gel cushion, and all that jazz people spend hundreds of dollars on. It is simply a thin piece of rubber that is between your foot and the ground. Not long after reading this book, I began running completely barefoot and decided to buy Fivefinger Vibrams. Not only did I realize my body self correcting itself without thinking of doing so, I was also running with perfect form and felt good. This is when I conceded the fact that our ancestors never had these high tech shoes and were better runners than modern generations. People never needed shoes to run, it was all a marketing scheme started by Nike. This book made me aware of our running past and how to fix running for the future.
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message 1: by Jason (new)

Jason Gruner Good Job.


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