Monday, June 13, 2011

Running and Character

Due to illness, insomnia and extreme readability, I’m already halfway through Born to Run. The thing that has stood out to me so far - other than the sheer awesomeness of the story - is the emphasis on the personality traits that make up a better runner. Evidence includes the story of Emil Zatopek starting on p.95, or the antidotes about Coach Vigil:
Posted on the wall of Vigil’s office was a magic formula for fast running that, as far as Deena could tell, had absolutely nothing to do with running: it was stuff like “Practice abundance by giving back,” and “Improve personal relationships,” and “Show integrity to your value system." p.119
Over the previous two years, Vigil had become convinced that the next leap forward in human endurance would come from a dimension he dreaded getting itno: Character. … Vigil wasn’t talking about “grit” or “hunger” or “the size of the fight in the dog.” In fact, he meant the exact opposite. Vigil’s notion of character wasn’t toughness. It was compassion. Kindness. Love. p.92
I’m looking forward to where this all leads, but from a book that I expected to hear more about form than psychology, this angle was a pleasant surprise.


  1. Whatever else you may say about the book, he sure knows how to spin a yarn.

    Hope you feel better soon...

  2. Had a minor bout of food poisoning: ugh. Sunday and Monday morning was a complete wash, but much better now.

    And this book is damned addicting.