What would you tell your future self?  As team NB looks to what’s next, they reflect on their values, convictions and experiences through a letter to their future self, which reveals not only who they are, but also who they want to be.

Watch their stories

Kenji Murapa

#teamnb


     
kenji

DEFY GRAVITY: Meet the Man Who Has
Made the World His Playground.

Letter to my future self

Kenji,

You’re here to run, jump and fly.

You’re here to be the boy with the toys, not the man with the plan. You’re here to be your own, not just another clone.

You’re here with an ‘S’ on your chest, not your heart on your sleeve.

You’re here to be the boss, follow your own rules. You’re here to run the zone and sit the throne.

You’re here to recreate your surroundings. You’re here to push your mind.You’re here to defy gravity.

Don’t analyze risk, nothing is off-limits.

You’re here to make the most of being alive.

Yours Truly,

kenji SHOP HIS LOOK

DEFY GRAVITY: Meet the Man Who Has Made the World His Playground.

“Why?” This word is one of the first we learn as kids. It becomes our refrain throughout childhood as we ask it again and again, learning from those around us as we explore our world. It is the simplest question we can ask, yet perhaps the most profound. But as we grow up we begin to ask it less and less. We begin to follow the “rules.” We begin to accept the answer “because that’s just the way things are.”

One man who has never stopped questioning his reality is South African parkour athlete and professional stuntman, Kundai “Kenji” Murapa. Why go from point A to point B? Why be held down by gravity? Why walk when you can fly? The answers that Kenji received to questions like these never quite satisfied him. The rules always seemed boring to Kenji. So he made his own.

When others walk down the street, they see a sidewalk, a street lamp, a building (that is, if they even notice these things at all). Kenji, on the other hand, sees a launching pad, a pole vault, a jungle gym. For Kenji, the entire world is a playground.

In a constant state of flow, Kenji rides the wave of the present moment, always in tune with his surroundings. He moves through his environment as if he, and he alone, has found the portal to a new dimension. One where gravity no longer exists. One where you are only limited by your imagination. And Kenji’s imagination knows no bounds.

When we caught up with Kenji he offered these words: “you’re here to be your own, not just another clone.” Fearlessly independent in all that he does, Kenji inspires us to get out and move. To follow our own rules. To live life to the fullest.

Because why not.

Callum Hawkins

#teamnb


   
callum

THERE ARE NO SHORTCUTS
TO ANYWHERE WORTH GOING

Letter to my future self


Callum,

It's a simple sport, really.

For all the talk of high altitude and low oxygen, when it comes down to it, all that matters is hard graft and brutal, bloody-minded consistency.

Keep it up Callum.

Go the distance.

17 miles a day.

120 miles a week.

6360 miles a year.

When it gets boring, and painful and tough.

When all you want to do is give up and take a day off, remember...

There are no shortcuts to anywhere worth going.

callum SHOP HIS LOOK









Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.

No one knows this better than Callum Hawkins.

There’s no doubting his natural ability - trained from a young age by his father, the twenty-five-year-old’s meteoric rise to become Great Britain’s dominant presence on the roads is nothing short of astonishing.

But you’d be wrong to think it came easy.

Callum understands the secret between being merely a good runner and being a great one: Just keep putting in the miles. 120 a week, to be exact.

However gifted Callum might be, it’s hard work that took him to Rio.

It's brutal, bloody-minded determination that won him the fastest half-marathon time of any European ever on US soil.

And it’s this unbreakable spirit that will only carry him further.

If Callum’s career is a marathon, then it looks like he’s only just warming up.

Heather Watson

#teamnb


   
Heather

PLAY THE BALL NOT THE OCCASION

Letter to my future self

Heather,

Whether it’s the first point or matchpoint.

The first round or the final.

It’s still the game you fell in love with.

The game you wake up every morning to train for.

The game you can’t live without.

When it looked like you couldn’t go on, you fought, you battled.

Because I know you’re desperate to win.

To succeed.

So forget the opponent. The crowd. The expectation. The sponsors.

Forget it all.

It’s simple...

...play the ball not the occasion

watson SHOP HER LOOK








HEATHER WATSON

Glory is an obsession, one that captivates your mind and rewires it to say ‘never stop’. For Heather Watson, this obsession started early. At only 7 years old she’d developed a passion for tennis and by the age of 12, she’d already changed her life to chase it, crossing thousands of miles of ocean to take a place at the Nick Bollettieri Tennis Academy in Florida. There she pledged her teenage years to an intense and grueling training scheme. Playing on the same courts that Serena Williams and Andre Agassi called home, this prestigious academy has a habit of making stars and she’s no exception.

Now 24, she holds her own in the world's top female tennis rankings and boasts gold in the junior commonwealth games. She’s earnt 3 titles in the WTA tour, 5 titles in the ITA and won doubles at Wimbledon.

When you’ve crossed the world for a career, played under pressure, batted through sickness, trained all days and all hours to achieve what she’s achieved, you don’t stop now.

boris berian

#teamnb


   
boris

Fast Food to Fast Times:
Boris Berian's Rise to the Top

Letter to my future self

Boris,

Remember the pleasure of running?

Remember the pain?

How much it hurt?

When you knew you were made for more.

The struggle...the work...the failure.

Remember the pain has a purpose.

Thats how character is built.

Remember your coaches that pushed you.

When Big Bear took you in.

When the world believed in you.

Remember when NO ONE believed in you?

And you were on your own...Fearless.

Remember all of it because that is what made you.

Remember all of it, everytime you put it on the line.

Remember yourself.

Yours Truly,

boris SHOP HIS LOOK

Fast Food to Fast Times: Boris Berian's Rise to the Top

Despite being one of the top 800m runners in the world, 2016 Olympian and World Champion, Boris Berian’s place in the track and field world wasn’t always as clear as it is today. Just three years ago, training alone and flipping burgers part-time in his hometown of Colorado Springs, Boris struggled to unlock the potential he knew he had.

Luckily for him, he wasn’t the only one who recognized his potential.

At the same time, out in Big Bear Lake, California, Olympian and World Bronze Medalist Brenda Martinez and her husband, Carlos Handler, had just founded the Big Bear Track Club, to provide opportunities for middle distance runners to pursue their potential in the sport. Brenda and Carlos were actively recruiting their first group of fiercely dedicated athletes when they began tracking Boris through race results.

“I had seen Boris’ 800m times, but his 400m time is what really stood out to me,” says Handler. “I remember thinking, ‘Man, this kid could be running so much faster.’ So I reached out and said I’d love to have him come out to Big Bear and join the team.”
After an hour-long phone conversation about training and the new team, Boris accepted Carlos’ invitation to join Big Bear Track Club and began making arrangements.

“Carlos bought me a plane ticket to come check out the club and I’ve been here ever since,” says Boris. “I love training in Big Bear because it’s a small village with no distractions. I can really focus on my training here.”

With the benefits of having a coach, teammates and resources now built into his training plan, Boris logged months of solid training. When the 2015 outdoor track season came around, Boris was ready to show everyone how fast he could really run. And it didn’t take him long to do it.

Berian showed strength and speed in his opening races, but he reached a new level at the IAAF Diamond League meet in New York City when he dipped under 1:44 in the 800, clocking 1:43:84. At that moment, he found himself near the top of the world 800m rankings.

“To be honest, we weren’t surprised by his race in New York,” says Carlos. “We both saw the workouts he was doing, so we knew that he could run that fast. We knew the potential was there.”

Boris went on to run sub-1:44 again in Monaco, solidifying his place as one of the top 800m runners in the world. Following his monster debut on the professional circuit, he returned to Big Bear more motivated than ever.

In 2016, Boris showed no signs of slowing down. Not only did he win the 800m at the World Indoor Championships, he won it his way – leading immediately from the gun. His momentum continued into outdoor track, where he nabbed a second place finish at the U.S. Championships.

With his momentum more powerful than it’s ever been, Boris looks ahead to the 2017 season hungry and eager to continue lowering his personal best and climbing the world rankings.

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