Big super duper exciting news from one of our RADrabbitPROs!!! Read this great blog from our very own Sabrina Littleand hear about how she will represent the United States at the 50-Mile World Championship in Portugal:
Big [Little] News:
One day in November, I came home from a weekend away and went for a run-lamenting a probable lack of fitness.
I’d missed a few days of training for a conference, after a period of relatively lower mileage. So that day, I trotted without expectation. After the first mile, my watched beeped: 6:10.
“Surely that’s not right,” I thought. I felt like I was moving too easily, and while I often hit 6:xx during training runs, it doesn’t happen accidentally and never feels very easy. I'm an ultrarunner. I go far more often than fast.
But as the miles clicked by, the pace stayed where it was. And when I ran the next day, the same thing happened. I wasn’t out of shape like I thought. For the first time in a long time, I was rested.
Rest. It’s not a new concept. But for a lot of runners (me included), it’s easy to fall into the trap of pushing hard every day. Fast is exciting. Slow means you have to admit to yourself your limitations as a finite entity. But when you push hard every day, you have to slow down because nothing is a special effort anymore. I know this. I teach this as a coach. Still, historically I have resisted rest.
Since November, I have been incorporating more rest and cross training days, and while the Texas summer is suppressing my speedwork, I’ve seen a lot of improvement from last summer to this one. Races have gone better as well.
Thus far, I have raced four times this year:
Rocky Raccoon 100 – 1st Place, 100-Mile National Trail Champion [2 hours, 11 minute improvement from my winning time in 2012]
Bearathon Half Marathon – 3rd Place – [Most significantly, I tied my husband. Contrary to popular opinion, this was not a planned outcome. I tried to drop him, and he tried to drop me. It turns out that when you do the same workouts, have the same sleep schedule, and eat the same foods, you become the same athlete. So, yes…We finished holding hands, but only because his hand was right next to mine for the entire race.]
Toughest in Texas 50K – 1st place overall – [I improved upon my course record by 15+ minutes, which was really encouraging.]
Cayuga 50-mile – 2nd Place, 50-Mile National Championship runner-up – This was significant because…I qualified for my second national team!
I guess it’s a weird time to announce I’m running for America. Vote for me. But don’t. It’s not that kind of running.
In late October, four other women and I will represent the United States at the 50-Mile World Championship in Portugal. You can read the press release here. Judging by my incredible teammates, I think we can do really well.
There are some experiences that are so surreal that it’s difficult to recall them as a non-fictional part of your personal history. For me, running for the US at the 2013 24-Hour World Championships was one of those. It is an honor to represent the United States, and I’m so grateful for the opportunity.
In Other News:
If you know me well, you know that I have a history of questionable fashion choices.
Well, in the past two weeks, my outfits have suddenly become coherent and sensible. Miracle? No. I signed with clothing company, rabbit! I love them. rabbit is a California-based, running-specific clothing company. Their clothes fit well, handle heat beautifully, and look great. fabbit’s founders are runners (talented runners), and their excitement for the sport is contagious.
I am thrilled about the team aspect of being a RADrabbitPRO. I am always emboldened by the goals of other athletes, and I’ve already been inspired by my teammates’ training and racing successes. Most of rabbit’s pro team consists of elite athletes with day jobs—like me. The company embraces and encourages us as whole people—with jobs, messy lives, and big running dreams. It’s a joy to run for this team.
In races, even though you’re the only one on the starting line, it’s not really just you. You stand there with your head and heart full of conversations you’ve had recently, and with the support of family and friends. You stand there based on the generosity of people who believe in the beauty of your goals. fabbit stands on the starting line with me now, and I'm proud to wear their singlet. I’ve been on the team for two weeks, and I am already abundantly grateful for their support.
Secondly, I was recently involved in a documentary—Just One Step. It is about the mental side of running. The director came to Waco to interview me, and then interviewed the team I coach (and love).
He filmed track practice. Then he hid in the forest during the Toughest ‘n Texas 50K with a video camera, and when he couldn’t access me directly, his drone did.
Have you ever been filmed by a drone? It feels like being chased by a hairdryer in the woods. I recommend it. Somehow, every time I was having a weak moment, I would think, “Ah, good. I’m glad the director isn’t seeing this right now.” And then he’d pop out of a bush. So be on the lookout for this! It should be fun. --------
Shout out to David, for being the best husband ever and for showing me what excellence looks like in small things and big things. And as always, the glory goes to God. Colossians 3:17.
- Sabrina Little, RADrabbitPRO