Running through forests, climbing up hills, getting lost in the desert and experiencing a race like none other in the world.
That’s what Christopher McDougall’s 2011 book, “Born to Run,” is about.
This book will surprise you at every turn. If you love to run or you’re just curious why other people do it, you need to read this book.
You will get a new perspective on how to run and why a person would run. There are many different kinds of people presented in this book. Some ran for distances most people would never dream of running, and others researched and then applied new information to take running down to the core.
You will see the joy of running from almost every angle there is.
What I found to be the most interesting aspect was the book’s emphasis on running barefoot.
The book offers comparisons of runners who had new high-tech shoes to the runners who would run barefoot or with simple shoes. The finding? It turns out the runners with less high-tech shoes or no shoes at all had little to no injuries. Our feet were not made to be put into shoes.
I love how one of the doctors in the book went into detail on the amazingly intricate parts of the foot. Dr. Paul W. Brand, chief of rehabilitation at the U.S. Public Health Service Hospital in Carville, La., and professor of surgery at Louisiana State University Medical School, writes: “We could wipe out every common foot ailment within a generation by kicking off our shoes.”
The muscles and tendons in our feet and ankles are like springs. When you see people run barefoot, the foot morphs to the ground beneath it, thus absorbing the impact and springing back off the ground. It is beautiful the way we were designed.
After reading this book, I wanted to go out and run. I think you will get the same feeling. Running will take you on a path from being a hindrance and a pain to a delight and a miracle, as you will discover when you read this book.
• “Born to Run,” published by Vintage, retails for $15.95 in paperback.
• April Soelberg, a member of the Yakima Herald-Republic’s Unleashed journalism program for high school students, graduated from Riverside Christian School in June.