Interview: Catra Corbett

catra3I’m super excited to familiarize you with this amazing athlete. She is far from meek, and not at all a conformist when it comes to what you would think an ultra/ endurance athlete should resemble. She is her own person and is burning a path for many to follow.

Catra Corbett’s story, while dubious to some, is inspiring to many more. By age 50, she’s completed over 250 ultramarathons, and is an avid CrossFitter. Her bright hair and even brighter clothing has become more than a trademark, it’s become a beacon to those that think they need to fit inside of a box in order to be the person they want to be.
She’s also a plant-based athlete to boot!

Without further ado, here are some questions I had for her and her responses. Enjoy and let me know if you’d like to see more interview like this.

OUI: After reading a bit about your story and background, I’m impressed and inspired to say the least. If you’re comfortable, please give the readers a little background info on why led you to racing? Were you always a runner?

CC: I was not always a runner in fact, I hated running! I was a party girl and into the goth dance scene. I was doing a lot of meth and drinking alcohol. I was selling drugs and one night the cops came in and busted me and my boyfriend at the time. I spend one night in jail. I was scared straight pretty much. I did not do anymore jail time just one night. I was given drug diversion. So I attended a out patient program and went to NA meetings.

I decided to start working out in a gym. A year after that, I decided to start running.

OUI: Are you always in training or do you ramp things up before a race?

CC: I’m always in training mode so I can pick a race and a moments notice and be ready.But I do plan my race schedule a year ahead because all the big hundreds sell out.

OUI: What does your training look like?

CC: My training , I run 80-120 miles a week so mondayThursday 5-15 miles FridaySunday 20-40 miles.I also cross train in a gym 4 days a week lifting weights and doing crossfit styled workouts

catra2OUI: Why not just run a 5k or 10k? What is it about the long distances that make you keep coming back?

CC: I don’t like running on the road and a 5k or 10k is to short for me. I crave the mountains and the wilderness it’s what keeps me alive. I save the 1/2 marathon trail races for my little dachshund TruMan. I run that distance with him. I’m an addict so I need more to stimulate my mind. Running all day and all night and into the next day of a hundred is what I love.

OUI: Speaking of TruMan, your social media posts always have pics of you and him. Does he just train with you or is he competitive too?

CC: My dog TruMan runs 30-45 miles a week with me. He has run run a couple 10ks a few half marathons , one marathon and a 48 hour race. I don’t consider myself competitive and he just loves to run. He runs races and we do it for fun and inspire others. He has raised $2000 for senior dog rescue. He’s pretty amazing for having 3 inch legs.

OUI: What’s your favorite distance to run and favorite race you have conquered?

CC: 100 miles is my favorite distance because of the mental and physical challenge my body goes through. I would have to say my Ohlone 200 mile solo run. It took me 76 hours and I finished with the Ohlone 50k on that Sunday. I have ran my own 100, 131 miles out on the course and always finish with the race happening on the Sunday. Last year I decided to push it and run 200 miles.I felt pretty good but it was a tough challenge. I had pacers during the night.

OUI: What tips would you give a beginner who is thinking if getting into ultrarunning?

catra1CC: Tips for a newbie running your first ultra, have fun and stay positive.

OUI: As a plant-based/ vegan athlete, what tips do you have for those new and old to running on getting optimal nutrition on long runs? What does your nutrition look like when training for an event?

CC: I’ve been a vegan for 20 years, I’m a raw foods vegan and mainly eat a fruitarian diet. My diet doesn’t change much but when I race I do eat packets of pocket fuel nut butters for calories and fat , coconut bars. During the night, if it’s cold, I will have a vegan soup. I use Vega gels and I eat a lot of coconut rolled dates when I race.

OUI: Lastly, what’s on the horizon and what race are you looking forward to most?

CC: I’m really looking forward to the Infinitus 888k 552 miles, now that will be a challenge.

Find her fanpage on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Catra-Corbett/10150136249905503 which coincidentally, is where I “borrowed” the photos used here. Thanks you Catra for the amazing opportunity and I can’t wait to hear how you do at Infinitus!

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