Oct. 11, 2007
By Erica Beck
Washington State Athletic Media Relations
The hills. The morning practices. The burning legs. It's all part of cross country runner Sara Trané's daily routine.
Trané, originally from Pixbo, Sweden, first began running during physical education class in school. Discovering how much she enjoyed it, she began to run with the boys. Then one day, her dad took her to a club and Trané has never looked back.
Sweden didn't have school teams for Trané to be a member of so she participated in club competitions instead. The practices were often late in the evening and everything was individual, including traveling to the meets.
"Here, I practice as a part of school and as a team and we travel as a team, too," said Trané. "It sounded easier and I wanted to train and compete with more people."
Trané is originally a track runner. Her best event is the 800 meters, but she also ran hurdles and competed in the long jump. Last season, she competed in the 1500 meters and is excited to try it again this season as well as the steeplechase. Cross country landed on her plate last year when she decided to do it for fun.
"I still have a hard time seeing myself as a cross country runner since this is only my second year doing it," said Trané. "I got into it for fun and to keep in condition for the track season but I do enjoy it."
Despite not being a cross country runner from the start, Trané was the top Cougar finisher at the Roy Griak Invitational Sept. 29, 2007, with a 22nd place showing in a time of 22:39.
Trané has settled in nicely at WSU since arriving in the fall of 2005, proving herself as one of the team's top competitors and making the most of her years in the Palouse.
"I flew over by myself and I remember thinking, `What am I doing?'" said Trané. "I had no idea where I was going or what to expect. At the same time, I knew if I didn't like it I could just go back home."
Trané is now in her third season with the Cougars. She misses her family and friends and, at times, misses the environment in which she grew up. Trané cites the fact that everything is bigger and comes in bigger amounts in the United States as one of the big differences from Sweden.
"A good example is when we went to the Mall of America. There were roller coasters, the mall, all kinds of food courts and the cinema; everything is in one place," said Trané. "It is more split up in Sweden. Everything is combined here to make it more convenient and everything is open 24 hours. I sometimes think that it doesn't have to be that convenient. If you need something at nine at night, maybe it can wait until morning."
Trané wants to continue her schooling after her undergraduate degree. The psychology major is looking into a counseling or life coaching career. But for now, Trané is just going to run. She started in Sweden, trekked thousands of miles to the Palouse to continue running and she certainly isn't going to stop now.