How to Outrun an Antelope

The bushman hunters of the Kalahari Desert hunt the Kudu antelope by pursuing it through the heat of the day until it collapses from exhaustion.

The Kudu is faster than the bushman hunter, but the hunter is relentless. He perseveres, and in the end, the antelope is no match for the bushman.

This might seem extreme. In the 21st century it seems unheard of that a person can outrun an antelope. But a human running on two legs over long distances is more efficient than an animal running on four. In addition to this, humans perspire all over their body, which is a more effective way of reducing body temperature, especially in the midday heat. Having two hands free means the hunter can carry water to replace the perspiration.

Humans are the only primates that hunt in this way. “Persistence hunting” was part of humanity’s evolution. So it’s really part of our age-old genetic make up. The average person on the street might not look capable of outrunning an antelope over five hours in 40 degree heat, but that’s how we caught our food before we invented bows and arrows.

Persistence is in our genes. It’s our heritage. We can persevere because we’ve done it before. Imagine what we can achieve if we don’t give up.

As the Roman poet Persius said: “He conquers who endures”.

Don’t give up!

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