Thursday, October 17, 2013

Born to Run?

     Recently I've started a book called "Born to Run" by Christopher McDougall. I've only read about 9 chapters of it so far, but I already find it to be very interesting! Apparently there's a tribe called the Tarahumara who can run hundreds of miles without getting injured or without stopping to rest. Naturally, I thought this was absolutely insane so I just had to read this book.

     The whole story starts off with the author going to various doctors and specialists all because he wanted to know why his foot hurt. When they all gave him the same answer, he takes a different path that ultimately takes him on the hunt to locate the Tarahumara runners. He finally finds them and runs into what I interpreted as some kind of crazy good runner called Caballo. They start talking and for some reason, Caballo's plans involve the author himself, and that is where I left off.

     Since the book tends to go off into these really long sections about background knowledge that would pertain to the book, I haven't really found out too much about the Tarahumara's secrets and how they run so much. I did however learn various of other pretty interesting things.

     I was actually quite shocked to learn that injury among runners is a lot more frequent than I thought.  According to the book, eight out of every ten runners get injured every year! I would never have guessed the ratio was that high, but apparently every footfall that hits the ground with a force that's equivalent to twice that runner's body weight! No wonder running puts so much strain on your legs. Now that I'm actually aware how frequent injuries can be, I've been taking care to do the little things like ice my legs because I don't think anyone wants to be injured.

     Perhaps the most interesting thing that I learned from the book is the fact that chia seeds are extremely good for you! Although they're tiny, chia seeds are packed with great things like omega 3, omega 6, protein, calcium, zinc, iron, fiber, and antioxidants! They're also great for lowering cholesterol, preventing heart disease, and building muscle.

     The Tarahumara brew this drink called iskiate that's supposed to make you feel amazing. I'm not sure if it actually has some kind of magical property to it, or you feel good just because you're supposed to. Anyways, it's simply made from dissolving chia seeds in water, adding some sugar, and putting in a few squirts of lime or lemon juice. I heard that its actually really tasty and refreshing, so I'm definitely planning on trying it!

     Already, I've learned some pretty useful facts. There's still a lot more to read though, so I'm hoping that I find out even more about running whether it has to do with injury, diet, or just technique!

     A quote from the book that I particularly enjoyed:

"We run when we're scared, we run when we're ecstatic, we run away from our problems and run around for a good time." - Christopher McDougall

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