That’s the title of a book I read last year. It’s by Adharandand Finn. He is a writer living in England who is also a runner.
The condensed version is that he moves with his family to Kenya for six months to learn the secret of why the Kenyans are just so very good at distance running. I’m not going give you the easy answer. You’ll have to read the book to find out.
One passage struck me as something I needed to remember and always keep in the back of my mind as I run.
While on a training run with his Kenyan friends he noticed that when they approached a hill the entire pack sped up and began to sprint. They did this time after time. He was puzzled and finally asked why the pack attacked up the hills.
The answer was simple and beautiful and it went something like this: They said – “We see hills as an opportunity to get stronger.” There is a lot of wisdom in those nine words.
I have adopted that philosophy and while I don’t always sprint up a hill I make sure not to ease up or slow down. I can tell you that this change in my view towards running hills has made a difference in my running, my endurance and what goes on in my head when I see a hill looming ahead.
Actually, the secret is…