Shaunae Miller-Uibo is one of the finest sprinters in the world, and perhapsr, the finest long sprinter in the world. Coach Lance Brauman says that her talents over 200 meters and 400 meters are quite impressive, and I agree, but that 400 meters is something to watch and enjoy! Stuart Weir did this interview in 2018 and gently reminded me of my non-use of the piece. Thanks, Stuart, for the nudge!
12 questions Shaunae Miller-Uibo
RunBlogRun, #1: How did you start track?
Shaunae Miller-Uibo: I started when I was six. My mom used to play softball and I used to go to the softball field a lot and run around the bases. My parents also have a story about me running round the house quickly and cutting the corners so they decided to throw me into track and field. A lot of my family did track as well. So I guess that was an easy decision. But my first time getting into it, I was six. I remember my first meet was at the Startrackers Classic and I signed up for 100, 200 and long jump. And I finished up winning all three so that was my start.
RunBlogRun, #2: At what point do you think “I could be good at this”?
Shaunae Miller-Uibo: I didn’t think I’d be good at it on to the age of nine. That was when I made my first Bahamas team. We competed at a meet in Jamaica and I ended up winning in my division. And that was the moment when I thought “okay, maybe I can do this for a living and see where it takes me”. Then I won gold in the world juniors and world youths. Those were my first global championships and those were steps which kept encouraging me to keep going and here I am today so I’m thankful for those moments.
RunBlogRun, #3: What was Rio like?
Shaunae Miller-Uibo: Rio was an amazing experience. It was my second Olympics and my third major championship. At London 2012 I finished up pulling my hamstring in the first round of 400m – in the first few metres actually. So it didn’t go that well. Rio was really special to me and I had my entire family there. I had put in so much hard work and so much dedication. I just moved over to my new coach and everything was new and learning. It was just amazing.
RunBlogRun, #4: You won the Olympic final with a dive?
Shaunae Miller-Uibo: A lot of people still use the word “dive” but there wasn’t really a dive. I’m fine with it now but it was really a fall, losing balance and trying to get across the line. I just give God all the thanks and glory because it ended the way it was supposed to end. And I’m thankful for it.
RunBlogRun, #5: In the Beijing 2015 World Championships you were second behind Allyson Felix.
Shaunae Miller-Uibo: That was an amazing experience and my first world outdoor medal. I had a lot of fun with it. The race went extremely well and was a very competitive race. Everyone put everything on the line and it was a really exciting race.
RunBlogRun, #6: In London 2017 you seemed to have won the race but finished out of the medals, what do you remember of the final?
Shaunae Miller-Uibo: Things happen in track and field and I lived and learned through that experience. Things just went a little haywire at the ending and I missed my steps and everything went a little off course. But I’m thankful for the moment. I’m a person who believes things happen for a reason – I’m not sure what the reason is but I’m sure there was an important reason behind it. Everything happens for a reason and it’s all in God’s timing. And the 2017 season finished well for me.
RunBlogRun, #7: 200 or 400?
Shaunae Miller-Uibo: I’ve been asked that a lot of times. I love both events but I love the 400 a little bit more. Even though some people think I’m better at 200, I would still put the 400 ahead. The 400 is my baby and is the event I like to focus on. I feel with the 400 I’m still learning a lot of things so hopefully when I put it together we can see the times drop but it’s my favourite and the one I think I’m better at. The 400m is a tough event but that’s what I love about it. It’s not an event that anyone can just pop in and do it but that’s what makes me love it a bit more. It’s a tough event and I love to go at it.
RunBlogRun, #8: It has been said that you are changing how the 400m is run, do you feel you are?
Shauae Miller-Uibo: I know that there are a few different types of 400m runners – some have speed and some with endurance. I try to capitalise on my speed, obviously. I feel the quicker I am in the 200m the more chance I have of running a quicker, more relaxed 400m. Like I said I’m learning and this year we’ve been working on the whole lot of new things. And learning to put it all together and definitely using my speed to my advantage.
RunBlogRun, #9: Is being married to an athlete an advantage?
Shaunae Miller-Uibo: I think it’s an advantage. With him being involved in the sport we understand each other to a whole new level. We support each other. We get to travel and watch each other compete. He’s a great motivation in my life as I am in his. I love it
RunBlogRun, #10: Do you train differently for 200 and 400?
Shaunae Miller-Uibo: I don’t think we’ve ever had a season where we just focused 200m. We train more for the 400 and use the strength from that. When it’s time for a 200m we do more speed work and let that kick in. The majority of the training is 400m and using the strength of that in the 200m.
RunBlogRun, #11: You have mentioned God a couple of times, do you have a faith?
Shaunae Miller-Uibo: I grew up in a Christian home, with my grandfather being a pastor. I have lots of uncles and aunts are also pastors. So I have always known to believe in God and trust him and I just carried on as I learnt more and more about the Bible and him. I completely trust him. My parents were involved in athletics so they taught me to understand it a little better. I always believe things happen for a reason. I believe God has a plan for me and a purpose and I trust in his timing.
RunBlogRun, #12: What ambitions have you got left
Shaunae Miller-Uibo: I haven’t really accomplished the only goal I have had in the sport and that is to be the best. I’m still working really hard towards that. I know there’s a lot of people to pass on the way up. So I continue to work hard towards that and hopefully things will fall into place. That’s the main thing for now.
To be the best I have to begin with a lot of hard work, dedication, but I also know that we can be anything we want to be life. This is something I’ve had my eyes on since I was a little girl and to have that accomplishment would satisfy the younger me, my goals and dreams so I want to fulfil those purposes.