Live. Love. Run. It's what I do.

Are we born to run?

I recently came across this TED talk video. I know it’s kinda long, but I think that Christopher Mcdougall had some interesting ideas. Before I discuss anything else, I will say that I don’t believe in evolution and I don’t think that we are like feral wolves who only live to run and hunt down food. I believe that we were all created by God, and that He created our bodies to be able to run and sweat and breathe. Anyways, while I disagreed with him on this, I think that some of the ideas behind his theories were still thought-provoking.

I loved his story from the New York Marathon in 2009. I got chills as he described how Deratu Tulu was encouraging Paula Radcliffe when she started to fall behind. I think that that is what running is all about – the sportsmanship and the compassion for each other.

The new barefoot running craze is controversial, and I’m not so sure where I stand on that issue. I think that while barefoot running may work for some people, I definitely need to keep my shoes on, at least for now. My Mizunos have kept me injury-free so far this season, and I don’t really want to risk an injury by my running style with my running shoes.

The part that stuck out the most to me was when McDougall was talking about how the runners long ago stayed together in a pack when they were tracking down animals. Now I’m not so sure that I follow McDougall on all of these claims and theories that he has, regarding how people long ago used to hunt down food. However, whether or not people used to chase after antelope with the rest of their pack, staying together is something important that my team tries to do. We have four girls that run similar times are always finishing well. They say that they always run the best when they stay together as a pack. I think that running with someone else is always the most beneficial. When you are running with someone else, they can push you along, and you can push them along to run better and faster.

I noticed that McDougall never returned to his story about Tulu’s compassion that she showed to her competitors. Perhaps he was more focused on our innate running abilities, but I was disappointed that he didn’t try to make any conclusions about how she could be so fast even though she had slowed down to try to help the woman she was running against.

Like I’ve been mentioning in my previous posts, the state meet is coming up this Saturday! I am hoping that we can run in a pack and win! But maybe that isn’t the only thing that matters. It’s hard to show compassion and sportsmanship to the other girls that we’re out to get and beat out on that course, but maybe we can work on that too. It didn’t slow Tulu down, so it shouldn’t slow us down either!

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Julie Yip-Williams

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