Book Review: Born to Run

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

My rating: 4 of 5 stars


A fun book about the mentally defectives who think running 100 miles through the desert is a good time.

McDougall is a big, affable, somewhat self-effacing dude who sucks at running. He wants to get better at running now that he’s approaching middle age, so he tracks down an insane ex-boxer named Caballo Blanco (white horse) who stalks around the Copper Canyon down in Mexico, living near (though not quite with) an indigenous tribe of reclusive ultrarunners called the Tarahumara.

The book is equal parts biomechanical investigation of running, exploration of Tarahumara culture as seen by a sequence of unhinged gringos, and memoir of a decidedly unpleasant race through secluded badlands in Chihuahua.

Sadly, it coincides with my whole evolutionarily guided return-to-nature vibe (lovingly referred to as “my ungabunga bullshit”) and now I’m investigating minimalist sandals or those stupid little foot gloves so I can emulate barefoot running in Philadelphia without turning my heels into pincushions for discarded heroin needles and broken bottles of Yangler.



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