I was reading Haile Gebreselassie interview on spike magazine and the great man was asked,
Why have Ethiopians been so consistently successful in distance running? His answer was
- Genes – Haile Gebresellassie, Kenenisa Bekele, and Dibaba sisters were born in Bekoji. A small village in ethiopia with a population of 33,000. With such a small population their is a big chance this guys are related one way or another. See the story on Bekoji, the village of athletes
- Teff, an Ethiopian food, a rich grain with lots of minerals
- Poverty, – Ethiopian runners are one of the three wealthiest people in Ethiopia, the others are businessmen and politicians. In a country of 80 million people, the majority live hand to mouth, and distance running offers the younger generation one of the few ways out.
Dibaba has built a two story mansion in Bekoji village, the only other is Bekeles’. Motivated by such signs of success, thousands of kids have picked up running.