Christopher McDougall is the author of "Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Super Athletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen."
Longtime reporter Christopher McDougall is also a longtime runner -- and he brings his reporter's passion and eye for detail to the mysteries of running in his latest book. "Born to Run" examines humanity's inborn need to run and sweat, and it's filled with passion, odd facts, oddly pertinent digressions and deeply engaging journeys to running subcults (and cults-of-one). The book has inspired at least one fan site.
McDougall writes for Outside, Men's Health, New York and other magazines. His other, equally intriguing book, is Girl Trouble: The True Saga of Superstar Gloria Trevi and the Secret Teenage Sex Cult That Stunned the World.
“We are the biggest sissies in the jungle. Every other animal is stronger than we are — they have fangs, they have claws, they have nimbleness, they have speed. We think Usain Bolt is fast — Usain Bolt can get his ass kicked by a squirrel.”
“Emily Baer signed up for a race called the Hardrock 100, which tells you all you need to know about the race. They give you 48 hours to finish this race. [Of 500 runners] Emily Baer she finishes in eighth place, in the top 10, even though she stopped at all the aid stations to breastfeed her baby during the race.”
“If you read folklore and mythology, any kind of myths, any kind of tall tales, running is always associated with freedom and vitality and youthfulness and eternal vigor. It’s only in our lifetime that running has become associated with fear and pain.”
“There is a growing subculture of barefoot runners, people who got rid of their shoes. And what they have found uniformly is you get rid of the shoes, you get rid of the stress, you get rid of the injuries and the ailments.”