“If you think running is all about running, you have not been running!” This is my original quote and Christopher McDougall in his book ‘Born To Run’ shows just that. It is the most beautiful book I have ever read. It goes beyond running and into topics like humility, love, passion, brotherhood, happiness. Through running we express ourselves. We, as humans, were created to run. And not just to the bus or taxi, we were born to run far!
“Born To Run: A hidden tribe, superathletes, and the greatest race the world has never seen”
by Christopher McDougall
It all starts with the age old question (or as it turns out, a question which has been asked for less than half a century), “How to avoid a running injury?” This was the dilemma the author was faced with. However, rather than listen to doctors who said running was not for him, he asked a better question – “Was man made for running?” Once such a question is posed, slowly but surely, answers start coming in. That is how McDougall came across the Rarámuri (better known as the Tarahumara), an ancient tribe living in the deep canyons of the Mexican Copper Valley. These men and women have been running for centuries, rather millennia, and not just to keep fit or from trouble, they ran for pleasure. Better yet, these people run distances which put to shame current ultra-runners, through nonexistent trails and in nothing more than sandals. Yet, they don’t get injured, nor do they suffer from diseases such as cancer, diabetes or heart related problems.
The author however, gives us more than the insight to the Tarahumara people, he introduces the reader to runners of the past and present, who did not become household names, but who achieved amazing feats in running. They did not give into the commercialisation of the sport but followed their hearts, making running pleasurable and simple. Their touching stories leave the reader wanting to find out more about each one of them, and through them, search how to become more in tune with the inner self.
Where to buy: amazon.com
You don’t have to be a runner to read this book. You will become one before finishing it. I am not very good at visualisation, but when reading ‘Born To Run’ I was there, running together with everyone through the sunny canyons of Mexico, through the trails of Leadville and the scorching heat of Death Valley. What was even greater, I became more in touch with my inner self.