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Running with the Kenyans

Passion, Adventure, and the Secrets of the Fastest People on Earth

This book is available for download with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device, and with iTunes on your computer. Books can be read with iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.


“Completely satisfying, as well-paced and exhilarating as a good run.”—The Boston Globe
Whether running is your recreation or your religion, Adharanand Finn’s incredible journey to the elite training camps of Kenya will captivate and inspire you, as he ventures to uncover the secrets of the fastest people on earth. Finn’s mesmerizing quest combines a fresh look at barefoot running, practical advice on the sport, and the fulfillment of a lifelong dream: to run with his heroes. Uprooting his family of five, Finn traveled to a small, chaotic town in the Rift Valley province of Kenya—a mecca for long-distance runners, thanks to its high altitude, endless paths, and some of the top training schools in the world. There Finn would run side by side with Olympic champions, young hopefuls, and barefoot schoolchildren, and meet a cast of unforgettable characters. Amid the daily challenges of training and of raising a family abroad, Finn would learn invaluable lessons about running—and about life.
With a new Afterword by the author.
“Not everyone gets to heaven in their lifetime. Adharanand Finn tried to run there, and succeeded. Running with the Kenyans is a great read.”—Bernd Heinrich, author of Why We Run
“Part scientific study, travel memoir, and tale of self-discovery, Finn’s journey makes for a smart and entertaining read.”—Publishers Weekly
“A hymn to the spirit, to the heartbreaking beauty of tenacity, to the joy of movement.”—The Plain Dealer

From Publishers Weekly

May 14, 2012 – In an effort to determine why Kenya consistently produces some of the fastest and most talented runners in the world, Finn packed up his wife and three kids and jetted off to the Kenyan running mecca of Iten to research their techniques, immerse himself in the culture for six months of training, and then run the Lewa Marathon—26 scorching miles across plains populated by elephants, lions, and rhino. Along the way, Finn, a longtime running enthusiast, explores the efficacy of hi-tech, comfortable shoes that allow runners to "hammer the road as hard as want," and tests the virtues of barefoot (or nearly barefoot) running, a method many Kenyan runners have gracefully mastered on account of having grown up without cutting-edge Nikes. In addition to technical issues, the author entertains possible cultural factors behind Kenyans' running prowess, including their diet (many drink mursik, "an unpalatable but potent tonic" of blood and cow's milk), and the fact that running provides some Kenyans with the opportunity to make decent money. Throughout his personal trials, Finn introduces readers to an interesting cast of characters, including Brother Colm O'Connell, the Irish priest and legendary coach from Iten's Catholic boarding school, and charming local runners Japhet and Chris Cheboiboch. Part scientific study, travel memoir, and tale of self-discovery, Finn's journey makes for a smart and entertaining read.

Customer Reviews


Wow! What an outstandingly well written book about an amazing journey. Finn captures the essence of running and training. His pursuit of greatness among the Kenyans was very inspiring and helpful, especially being a runner myself. This book taught me so much and deepened my respect for all marathon runners! A great read for all runners and non runners looking for a way to improve themselves in any pursuit, the Kenyan way.

Running with the Kenyans
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  • $12.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Sports & Outdoors
  • Published: May 15, 2012
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Seller: Penguin Random House LLC
  • Print Length: 304 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

Customer Ratings