“Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up, it knows it must outrun the fastest lion or it will be killed. Every morning in Africa, a lion wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the slowest gazelle, or it will starve. It doesn't matter whether you're the lion or a gazelle-when the sun comes up, you'd better be running.”
Proverb attributed to Roger Bannister, quoted in Born to run
"You don't stop running because you get old. You get old because you stop running"
Jack Kirk aka the Dipsea Demon, quoted in Born to run
“If you don't have answers to your problems after a four-hour run, you ain't getting them.”
“The reason we race isn't so much to beat each other,... but to be with each other.”
“You don't have to be fast. But you'd better be fearless.”
“People sometimes sneer at those who run every day, claiming they'll go to any length to live longer. But don't think that's the reason most people run. Most runners run not because they want to live longer, but because they want to live life to the fullest. If you're going to while away the years, it's far better to live them with clear goals and fully alive then in a fog, and I believe running helps you to do that. Exerting yourself to the fullest within your individual limits: that's the essence of running, and a metaphor for life — and for me, for writing as whole. I believe many runners would agree”
"We've got a motto here--you're tougher than you think you are, and you can do more than you think you can. Guy like Aron, he shows the rest of us what we can do if we dig deep."
Ken Chlouber, the co-founder of Leadville Trail 100 talks about Aron Ralston. Quoted in Born to run
"It wasn’t just the racing they loved; it was the thrill of exploring the brave new world of their own bodies."
“Whether you believe you can or believe you can’t, you’re probably right.”
“We run when we're scared, we run when we're ecstatic, we run away from our problems and run around for a good time.”
“Distance running was revered because it was indispensable; it was the way we survived and thrived and spread across the planet. You ran to eat and to avoid being eaten; you ran to find a mate and impress her, and with her you ran off to start a new life together. You had to love running, or you wouldn't live to love anything else. And like everything else we love-everything we sentimentally call our 'passions' and 'desires'-it's really an encoded ancestral necessity. We were born to run; we were born because we run.”
“Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever."
“I run because it’s so symbolic of life. You have to drive yourself to overcome the obstacles. You might feel that you can’t. But then you find your inner strength, and realize you’re capable of so much more than you thought.”
“Run when you can, walk if you have to, crawl if you must; just never give up.”
“The miracle isn’t that I finished. The miracle is that I had the courage to start.”
“Some seek the comfort of their therapist's office, other head to the corner pub and dive into a pint, but I chose running as my therapy.”
“If you want to become the best runner you can be, start now. Don’t spend the rest of your life wondering if you can do it.”
“Running is the greatest metaphor for life, because you get out of it what you put into it.”
“There is no such thing as bad weather, just soft people.”
“He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.”
“If you run, you are a runner, it doesn’t matter how far or how fast. It doesn’t matter if today is your first day or if you’ve been running for twenty years. There is no tests to pass, no license to earn, no membership card to get. You just run.”
"Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional"
Quoted by Haruki Murakami in What I talk about when I talk bout running
"Reaching the finish line, never walking, and enjoying the race. These three, in this order, are my goals."
"Of course it was painful, and there were times when, emotionally, I just wanted to chuck it all. But pain seems to be a precondition for this kind of sport. If pain weren’t involved, who in the world would ever go to the trouble of taking part in sports like the triathlon or the marathon, which demand such an investment of time and energy? It’s precisely because of the pain, precisely because we want to overcome that pain, that we can get the feeling, through this process, of really being alive—or at least a partial sense of it. Your quality of experience is based not on standards such as time or ranking, but on finally awakening to an awareness of the fluidity within action itself. If things go well, that is."
“Struggling and suffering are the essence of a life worth living. If you're not pushing yourself beyond the comfort zone, if you're not demanding more from yourself - expanding and learning as you go - you're choosing a numb existence. You're denying yourself an extraordinary trip.”
“I run because if I didn’t, I’d be sluggish and glum and spend too much time on the couch. I run to breathe the fresh air. I run to explore. I run to escape the ordinary. I run…to savor the trip along the way. Life becomes a little more vibrant, a little more intense. I like that.”
“Unless you're not pushing yourself, you're not living to the fullest. You can't be afraid to fail, but unless you fail, you haven't pushed hard enough."
“Pain is the body's way of ridding itself of weakness.”
“How to run an ultramarathon ? Puff out your chest, put one foot in front of the other, and don't stop till you cross the finish line.”
“The human body has limitations; the human spirit is boundless.”
"I don't think about the miles that are coming down the road, I don't think about the mile I'm on right now, I don't think about the miles I've already covered. I think about what I'm doing right now, just being lost in the moment."
"The body does not want you to do this. As you run, it tells you to stop but the mind must be strong. You always go too far for your body. You must handle the pain with strategy...It is not age; it is not diet. It is the will to succeed."
Jacqueline Gareau, 1980 Boston Marathon champ
"If you feel bad at 10 miles, you’re in trouble. If you feel bad at 20 miles, you’re normal. If you don’t feel bad at 26 miles, you’re abnormal."
Rob De Castella
"Most people run a race to see who is fastest. I run a race to see who has the most guts."
"There are clubs you can't belong to, neighborhoods you can't live in, schools you can't get into, but the roads are always open."
"It hurts up to a point and then it doesn't get any worse."
“Beyond the very extreme of fatigue and distress, we may find some amounts of ease and power we never dreamed ourselves to own; sources of strength never taxed at all because we never push through obstruction.”
Quote by William James used by Scott Jurek at the end of his e-mails.
“Strictly by accident, Scott stumbled upon the most advanced weapon in the ultrarunner’s aresenal: Instead of cringing from fatigue, you embrace it. You refuse to let it go. You get to know it so well you’re not afraid of it anymore.”
" I love the Beast. I actually look forward to the Beast showing up, because every time he does, I handle him better. I get him more under control"
Lisa Smith-Batchen talking about exhaustion, quoted in Born to Run
"If you can't excel with talent, triumph with effort."
"Putting miles in your training log is like putting money in the bank. You begin to draw interest on it immediately."
“Giving up was never an option”
“Suffering, I was beginning to think, was essential to a good life, and as inextricable from such a life as bliss. It’s a great enhancer. It might last a minute, but eventually it subsides, and when it does, something else takes its place, and maybe that thing is a great space. For happiness. Each time I encountered suffering, I believed that I grew, and further defined my capacities – not just my physical ones, but my interior ones as well, for contentment, friendship, or any other human experience.”
“People think I'm crazy to put myself through such torture, though I would argue otherwise. Somewhere along the line we seem to have confused comfort with happiness. Dostoyevsky had it right: 'Suffering is the sole origin of consciousness.' Never are my senses more engaged than when the pain sets in. There is a magic in misery. Just ask any runner.”
“When you win, you don't examine it very much, except to congratulate yourself. You easily, and wrongly, assume it has something to do with your rare qualities as a person. But winning only measures how hard you've worked and how physically talented you are; it doesn't particularly define you beyond those characteristics.
Losing on the other hand, really does say something about who you are. Among other things it measures are: do you blame others, or do you own the loss? Do you analyze your failure, or just complain about bad luck?
If you're willing to examine failure, and to look not just at your outward physical performance, but your internal workings, too, losing can be valuable. How you behave in those moments can perhaps be more self-defining than inning could ever be. Sometimes losing shows you for who you really are.”
"We run, not because we think it is doing us good, but because we enjoy it and cannot help ourselves...The more restricted our society and work become, the more necessary it will be to find some outlet for this craving for freedom. No one can say, 'You must not run faster than this, or jump higher than that.' The human spirit is indomitable."
Sir Roger Bannister, first runner to run a sub-4 minute mile