In training and competitions, we all arrive at a point at which it is no longer fun. People call it the Grind, which starts when it gets tiring, painful, and tedious. The Grind is also the point at which it really counts. Love isn’t in the cards here because there’s not much to love in pain. I don’t love the Grind but I don’t hate it either. I accept the Grind, make the sacrifices it takes, suffer through and push beyond my limits because I know it will make a difference one day. And to me that ‘one day’ is all that matters.
I started swimming at an early age, but didn't take it seriously until high school. Peter Ward gave me an opportunity to prove myself to swim for George Mason University. I wasn’t even close to being one of the best, but my work ethic made up for any lost talent
During the summers I participated in beach lifesaving competitions for Virginia Beach Lifesaving. My favorite event soon became the Run-Swim-Run. Turns out I was the only swimmer who can really run. I started running especially if I missed morning swim workouts when the waves were good.
I read Lance Armstrong’s “It’s Not About the Bike” while a sophomore in college and decided I would like to take up cycling. With the help of some friends, I found a cheap road bike and started riding in 2003. Since I already had the swim down, I signed up for the Breezy Point and Sandman Triathlons that summer as well
I joined the road cycling team at Mason and ended up racing during the spring my last two years.
I wasn’t good enough to be noticed by the talent scouts at USA Triathlon. No phone calls, emails, or anything. My swim times were OK and run was mediocre at best. I basically kept knocking on the door and would make sure I had the race of my life when ever I had the opportunity to race.
In the early years, I desperately wanted to be part of the development and resident programs. For years, I would point out my results especially when I beat the members of the USAT teams I was trying to get on. Even after a few decent results, I had to go back and continually prove myself again. I finally got a break when I won Nationals in 2009
Years in Triathlon: First race in 2003, Pro since 2006
Education: Business Management, BS. George Mason University
Hometown: Virginia Beach, VA
Currently living in: Colorado Springs, CO
Favorite Foods: Coffee. Lots of Coffee.
Favorite Race: Escape from Alcatraz or anything hot.
Favorite workout: Long runs during a cold, wet, and windy day.
Proudest moment: Running down the field in 2011 Huatulco World Cup after a bike crash and losing my water bottles.
400IM – 4:06 (yds)
500 free – 4:49 (yds)
Half Marathon – 1:08:43
Resting Heart Rate – 34
As a 2-time Olympic trials qualifier, Sage has competed at a national class level. In 2007 he was the youngest participant in the Olympic marathon trials at the age of 21.
A native of Oregon, Sage ran for Newberg High School and placed 13th in the state cross country meet his senior year. Determined to run DI in college, Sage traveled across the country to run for LetsRun.com co-founder Robert Johnson at Cornell University. At Cornell Sage not only qualified for the 2008 US Olympic trials marathon (junior year) – he also won the Ivy League Conference title for 10,000m on the track and qualified as an individual for the 2007 NCAA Championships in cross country.
Sage ran as a Brooks-sponsored elite runner on the post-collegiate Hansons-Brooks Distance Project team
from August of 2009 to February 2012. His running resume from their website can be found here. During his time at Hansons, Sage placed 17th overall at the 2010 Bank of America Chicago Marathon (8th American in the race), and placed 5th in the 2011 Rock n’ Roll New Orleans Mardi Gras half marathon with a personal best time of 1:04:32. Sage also ran a personal best marathon time of 2:16:52 at the Rock ‘n’ Roll San Diego Marathon that year (2011). In the spring of 2012 Sage started ultra marathons and trail running. In his ultra debut had earned a 2nd place overall finish at the Chuckanut 50k
in Bellingham, WA in March after missing a turn and running off course for 8 minutes. In June 2012, Sage won the Mt. Washington Road Race in 58:27…the fastest time ever by an American on the all uphill course. In July 2012 Sage won the White River 50 in 6:16 and bettered Anton Krupicka’s course record by over 9 minutes on the 50 mile course. In September 2012 Sage placed 12th at the World Mountain Running Championships in Italy and 5th at the Jungfrau MarathonWorld Long Distance Challenge…leading Team USA to a Bronze Medal team performance. Sage looks to continue competing at a high level on the roads and trails at distances from the half marathon to 100k for the rest of the year with a focus on becoming one of the best ultra/trail/mountain runners in the world.
Two-time Ironman France and 2011 Abu Dhabi Triathlon champion Frederik Van Lierde has been a professional triathlete since 2003, and is also a member of Leie Triatlon Team Latem, one of Belgium's best triathlon teams!
For me, I live on the energy that running gives me and the support of the people who await me at the end of a race.
Sebastien Chaigneau was born and brought up in the 'flatlands' of France (La Vienne). However, from an early age he heard the call of the mountains, and he looked for the limits of the far horizon. Even as a child it was the wild expanses and the nature, which were the world that inspired him and captivated his attention. Despite living in the flatlands, as soon as Sebastien learnt how to put 'one foot in front of the other he started 'athletic' school. Training and competeing at national level, his speciality was the steeple-chase.
Bringing together his passions for the outdoors and for athletics eventually led Sebastien to the joys of trail running. This was to become his big love. As he grew older Sebastien started to play the game of endurance - the game that we play when we chance the challenge of an ultra-race. Now living in the Haute-Savoie (Annecy) region of France, Sebastien can take complete advantage of the 'playground' in which he lives. Over the last years, Sebastien has found his strength in 'ultra-races' and has achieved great successes, most particularly in the Libyan Challenge and the 2009 and 2011 edition of The North Face "Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc".
Birth date: February 23rd 1972
Home: Haute Savoie, Fance
Favourite destination: Everywhere
Favourite Mountain: Alps (but I'd love to go to Nepal, Alaska or the Andes)
Favourite Book: 'Encorde mais libre' by Patrick Berraud
Favourite Films: Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter films, La ligne verte etc.
Favourite Food: I love to try different foods while traveling, if don't make a race.
Greatest Fear: In life - to not be there if my family needs me; in a race - to miss the start.
How I Relax: Spending time with my wife and children on the beach in the summer.
Philosophy: Run as long as you can and you will, because not everyone has this opportunity. For me, I live on the energy that running gives me and the support of the people who await me at the end of a race.
What inspires you? The nature and finding animals on the trail or meeting people from diverse cultures.
Words to live by: To take pleasure but only while respecting the environment.
When I'm running on top of the mountains or cannoeing in the middle of the sea, I feel as small as nothing... and yet I feel the most intense sensations of freedom and peace my spirit is free
Fernanda is Brazilian with a fervent love of nature. Through her love of sport and looking for a challenge she has traveled widely and now lives in the mountains of the Spanish Pyrenees. But still she feels rooted in the waterfalls and little mountains of Minas Gerais where she was born. As a child she was asked what her 'dream' would be - to live in a big house on the beach, or to travel the world. Her dream was to travel. But she realised early that to travel you have to find a way to fund your explorations and without parental help she knew that she would have to be a good person, and a good athlete - and in that way to hope to find support.
At just eight years of age Fernanda started to race, and then two years later was training towards Olympic level gymnastics in the USA. By 23 she participated in a 600km nonstop International Running Expedition. She has progressed through adventure racing, multi-sport races and ultra trails to become a great endurance athlete. Now sponsored by The North Face and her legs running trails around the world, Fernanda is living her dream...
In her professional life, Fernanda practised as an environmental lawyer and has also been greatly involved in outdoor education through ONG Outward Bound. In this way her love of nature is not limited only to her experiences through her sport, but also to reaching out to others in working and teaching to conserve and protect our natural environment.
Her passion for the outdoors is rooted deep within her experiences, "when I'm running on top of the mountains or cannoeing in the middle of the sea, I feel as small as nothing .... and yet I feel the most intense sensations of freedom and peace ... my spirit is free". Passionate about the forests, the mountains, the beaches and the rivers, for Fernanda her delight is to be fully there within the nature - both within her sports but also in the sense of caring for and protecting our environment. Her dream is to become a role model as a runner in the world-wide community of ultra runners. Her philosophy in life is simple - to "move ...positive".
SKYRUNNING World Champion