by Christopher McDougall
His story was very interesting but a bit jumpy; it kept going back and forth between telling the author's personal experience in traveling, searching for the tribe, meeting up with other runners and being involved in running events. Then it would switch to telling about a runner he had met, and past events and for a moment I'd be thrown off when the narrative went back into the present. The first half of the book was all about people; runners learning from the Tarahumara and runners coming to compete with them. The litany of names got a bit boring although some of the characters were quite colorful and eccentric.
What I really enjoyed was the last part of the book, which had more to say about the logistics of running, as it were. Diet, endurance, technique, but mostly about shoes and how they don't (according to his research) really help our feet at all. He claims that modern shoes with all their fancy features do nothing to prevents sports injuries and could even cause them. I found this all very interesting. He started running barefoot himself to see if it would improve things, and had good results.
I only wished to read more about the Tarahumara themselves, there wasn't much mention of them beyond their running ability and reclusive nature. The parts about ultrarunners and their crazy 100-mile races over mountain terrain really took me aback. I had no idea people did such things. And the parts about how human beings seem to have evolved physically to be endurance runners, including an experience with a native African tribe running down an antelope was very intriguing.
I first noticed this book on Reading Through Life and Sophisticated Dorkiness. I really read this one thanks to my older sister. She noticed it had gotten on my TBR list twice, and loaned me her copy. Thanks, Sis!
Rating: 3/5 ........ 287 pages, 2009
The Blue Bookcase
Run it My Way