Biologist, award-winning nature writer, and ultra-marathoner Bernd Heinrich has spent much of his career exploring the phenomenon of ultra-running and it’s roots in human evolution.
In his book Why We Run: A Natural History (originally titled “Racing the Antelope”), Heinrich reflected on the sport of running as a scientist, and recounted his performance in the 100 kilometer race that ushered in his ultra-marathon career.
Combining his expertise as a physiologist, comparative animal biologist specializing in exercise and temperature regulation, and runner, he posits that the unique human capacity for long-distance running in heat is a human adaptation similar to running adaptations in other animals. Another argument of the book was that humans evolved to be ultra-distance runners that could run down even the swiftest prey, through a combination of endurance, intelligence, and the desire to win.
“We are all runners” —Bernd Heinrich
In this video we learn about Heinrich’s incredible life, his running achievements, and what we may learn from him.
Bernd Heinrich is a retired Professor living in a log cabin in the woods of Western Maine. He has held numerous running records throughout his life and has committed much of his time to the study of the natural world. Via Salomon Running TV.