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The Best Book I've Ever Read: "Born To Run"

I'm a reader. I estimate I've read well over 1,000 books in my lifetime.

And for what it's worth "Born To Run" by Christopher McDougallis the best book I've ever read.

I don't want to summarize the book too much because it will take away from McDougall's brilliance, but I'll summarize it enough so that you'll know if you are the type of person who would appreciate this.

Born to Run
Born to Run
Born to Run

It's a book about the Tarahumara Indians of the Copper Canyon in Mexico, who are called the world's greatest distance runners. The narrative gets into how they got this way, why you've likely never heard of them and what the author went through to get close to these people who don't respond to our Western culture.

As you read, you'll ask yourself a million times, "Is this really happening? That's because the author manages to befriend an American man who essentially becomes an honorary Tarahumara member.

The climax of the book leads to a race between the Tarahumara runners, one of the world's greatest ultramarathoners and a group of obsessed runners, including the author, who put themselves through torture to be able to say that they participated in a race that might never happen again.

What makes McDougall's storytelling so successful is the weaving of his narrative. He knows when the reader needs a break, so he opines about why more expensive running shoes are actually worse for you and introduces you to the people who believe that man is a species that was built to run.

I wish I could say that I found a diamond in the rough, but I didn't. This book, which came out earlier this month, is at No. 63 on Amazon's best seller list. That in itself is a remarkable feat given that you'd think the running niche might exclude some potential buyers.

On the other hand, a book like this should do well in the world we now live in. Unlike books about Madoff, Alex Rodriguez or the world financial crisis, you can't find this story anywhere else.

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