Adventure zac_sunderland_header

Published on June 8th, 2009 | by Alex and Brett Harris

ESPN The Mag: Do Hard Things

ESPN The Magazine’s latest cover story is about 17-year-old Zac Sunderland — a Christian and a rebelutionary. The title of the article? Do Hard Things.

The title was inspired by a shirt Zac wears as he makes his way around the world — and the phrase that has come to serve as a motto for his great adventure.

ESPN journalist, Chris Jones, explains the inspiration in this excerpt:

Zac has a brown T-shirt that reads “Do Hard Things,” and mile after mile, ocean after ocean, he pulled it over his head to remind himself why he was wending his way around the world at six knots.

While the article doesn’t make the connection between “Do Hard Things” and the book or the movement, Zac does — as he shared on his blog a few months ago.

Connection or not, Brett and I are excited to see “Do Hard Things” reach a national mainstream audience through the exploits of a true rebelutionary. Let’s show the world what it means to “do hard things” through and for Christ.

+ Read the Article + Visit Zac’s Blog +


About the Author

are the co-founders of and co-authors of Do Hard Things and Start Here. They have a passion for God and for their generation. Their personal interests include politics, filmmaking, music, and basketball. They are both graduates of Patrick Henry College in Purcellville, Virginia.

  • Brenna

    Unbelievable. I am like shocked. Congrats Zac!

  • Katy B.

    Wow. Awesome! Go Zac!!

  • Jessica Itzel

    That’s really amazing! It’s awesome what can be done with Christ! He can use us to do unbelievable things. It’s such a great encouragement to see other people actually DOING hard things. God is amazing!

  • Jane Hall

    Awesome! YOU ROCK!!!!!!!!!

  • very awesome!! Congrats Zac!!!

  • Johanna H.

    Amazing! That is so cool!!!

  • Jordan Whitmire

    YAY! Praise the Lord. That’s Amazing. WOOT!

  • Wow! That’s pretty amazing!

  • Lissie Luvs 2 pray

    I love the shirt that he’s wereing on the cover very Funny Way to go ZAC

  • Zoe Boy

    INCREDIBLE!! Thats the point of the rebelution, to DO HARD THINGS! To prove to the world that teenagers aren’t just status quo. We can impress the world! “I can do ALL things through CHRIST who strengthens me”


  • Hannah Jean Irwin

    Great that so many people will see that and read about christians making a difference. God is and will use us in big ways, and this is proof!

  • This just proves, God works in mysterious ways!
    And even if we don’t always know what’s going on, He’s ALWAYS working “Behind the scenes”.
    This is just wonderful that he’s been able to work like that with Zac!

  • Ellie

    Wow, thats’ amazing! Way to go Zac! Keep doing hard things! God be with you!

  • Katelyn

    Congrats, Zac! God was really with and kept you safe!

  • Tony Rodriguez

    Thank God that Do Hard Things and the rebelution is being showed through Zac!

  • Mary B.

    Wow! Good job, Zac! That is so cool that you got on the cover! Woo-hoo! I hope this inspires us all to truly ‘Do Hard Things’. :)

  • Brilliant! I am so glad that do hard things is being seen more and more in the world. I am profoundly thankful that word of the rebelution- and that word of God- is getting out there through rebelutionaries!

  • Stephanie D.

    That is so cool! It is really inspiring to see people doing hard things.

  • Incognita


  • Brandon

    Congrats to Zac! What an incredible testimony and story for the rebelution.

  • Woah! ESPN?! WOAH! Way to go Zac!

  • WOW!!
    Way to go Zac!

  • Ahhhh! Amazingggg!!!! Congratulations! God is glorified!!!

  • This is amazing! Though it’s not connected directly, I’d daresay it’s still connected indirectly through Zac. :) Way to go Zac! May He be glorified!

  • Great what he did. But did he do it to get a magazine cover? And does he event want more? Why does he not do it for God alone and give to HIM the honor? This does not sound very Christinan…

  • Very cool.

  • GJG

    This is so cool. Love the T-Shirt. Make sure to read his blog… so cool

  • CHEA! MY MAN KFUST TOLD ME ABOUT U – that is air J for Jesus right there!
    Encouraged man, keep goin’ hard! Praise God for ya!

  • Joseph Goodwin

    Wow! I JUST read the impression article, so-I’m impressed that Zac is doing this! That is absolutely amazing. But, wow, guys: just think of the One tha created the seas that Zac’s on! And just think of the Master Sailsman Who controls the very seas with His words. Zac can’t even go to the depths of the sea without God not being there!
    So: good job Zac for remembering it’s all SDG, and thanks for helping me be impressed with God through you!

  • Elizabeth

    What a testimony. May God be glorified through this.

  • Samuel F

    Wow, I am glad to see a rebelutionary in the news doing hard things.

  • Josiah Blanchard

    Wow, thats cool…I agree with his t-shirt though…he should have gotten something a little bigger than that. be on tv or something…
    Good Job!


  • Sarah A.

    Love the t-shirt saying!! That’s very true! Great job!!

  • Lexi

    That is awesome!!!! Praise God!!!! Way to go Zac! How inspiring!

  • A Vermonter

    That’s way cool dude! congrats zac!

  • Sam Larson

    wow, that sounds like a great adventure! good job

  • So cool! Love it!

  • Daniel Hayes

    Wow, that’s awesome! It must have been cool talking to astronauts in the ISS while sitting on the deck of your boat. It took a lot of determination to sail solo around the world. Congratulations!

    P.S. Nice shirt.

  • aa

    Great Job Zac

  • kayli

    SO cool!!

  • Christopher S.

    Wow! Great job! What a great ministry opportunity!

  • Dude i think what you did was exactly what Alex and Brett are talking about
    Congrats man praise God
    I think that you are awesome and I hope your sister doesn’t beat you! 😛
    Noah OUT!

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