As part of my new life as a runner, I looked to find any book I could on running. While this wasn’t specifically on running, it was a gold mine of useful information for a runner. Endure: Mind, Body, and the Curiously Elastic Limits of Human Performance is a book that I not only love, but will keep and refer back to often. Alex Hutchinson reveals some fascinating information about human endurance.

Yes, I was thinking I would find a book about how to increase endurance and I guess in a roundabout way I did…. I just had to dig. What I found was much more useful than a list of things to do to increase running endurance. What I found was an enthralling history of testing human limits and reaching beyond them.

My big takeaway is how much of endurance is determined by our mind. It is almost impossible to die of exhaustion. Our brains pump the brakes and stop that from happening. The key is in trying to figure out how to train your brain to allow you to push closer to your limits. I highly recommend the book even if you have no interest in endurance sports. What it says about you as a human is worth it alone.

I also have to admit that one of the books that made me believe I could make the transition from couch potato to runner is Born to Run by Christopher McDougal. It is still my favorite book on running.

by Chris Doelle