For most, getting into a multidiscipline sport like triathlon can be a daunting task. But, for Lauren Lim, it was as simple as flowing into the moment. “One time, my friend invited me to go running with her,” reveals Lauren, “I was kind of forced into it.” Finishing her first 5K race seemingly flipped a switch within Lauren. She started joining increasingly longer distances and progressively improving her race time, building up to racing for a full marathon distance of 42 kilometers in a short span of time. But Lauren was on the hunt for more challenges. She was already lining up her next goals shortly after signing up for her full marathon. “The idea of joining a half-Ironman popped into my head. I didn’t really think about the distance, or the biking, or the swimming. I simply signed up for it,” confides Lauren.
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Her friends were astounded, worrying that she might have bitten off more than she could chew. “At that point, I wasn’t really thinking about it. I didn’t know how to bike and I only knew the basics of swimming,” Lauren relates. One month before the triathlon, she bought her first bike. “I couldn’t balance, I couldn’t move. I didn’t know how to use a bike at all,” recalls Lauren. But, everything, it seemed, conspired to help her achieve her goal. “I got thrown into the whole thing. It’s really funny when I think about it now,” she laughs. From finding a coach, to having friends who accompanied her on 100-Kilometer bike rides, Lauren slowly inched her way through her preparations. “To give you a rough idea of how my day goes, I work regular hours. I wake up at 4:30, get to where I have to be at by 5 – train for an hour or so – get back home by 7, grab breakfast, nap a bit then go to work at 9 am. After work, I’d be weight training,” she relates.
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To get a feel of the transitions of triathlon racing, Lauren signed up for a preparatory race, the very first triathlon race she would participate in. She had to complete a 900-meter pool swim, 30 km bike ride, and 5 km run. She did exceedingly well. “I won first place in my age group,” reveals Lauren. But, the Ironman 70.3 was a different beast altogether, with a course consisting of a 1.9K swim, 90K bike ride, and a 21.1K run. Lauren had her doubts. She was confident about the run portion, relatively unperturbed about the swim portion, but was genuinely concerned about the bike portion. “It was a do or die thing,” says Lauren. She sought ways to boost her morale. Going back to what fuels her passion made a big difference. In a sense, it was Lauren’s love for running that powered her forward, allowing her to get past the swim and bike portions with relative ease. “During the entire swim and bike portions, all I think about is getting to the run,” she confesses. “Something clicks, something changes when I hit the road and I am running. It feels awesome.”
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Having proper gear played a huge factor in her race. “I knew my legs were super tired after the swim and bike portions. But, using my Skechers Go Run 5 really mattered; it really helped," Lauren relates, "A good pair running shoes is very important. Other athletes were stretching out their cramps; I did not get any at all.” Crossing the finish line was monumental for Lauren but fate had other plans in store. “I was in my hotel room, half asleep, when someone called me up,” she recalls. Apparently, she had won 3rd place and was expected to attend the awarding ceremony. “I had to run down the hotel stairs, in my heels and in a dress,” Lauren laughs.
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Since then, Lauren has set her sights on the international scene by taking on her first international marathon and her second 42KM run: the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. After that, the world is her proverbial oyster. She's signing up for two Ironman 70.3 races next year and the Tokyo Marathon lottery. “I just really fell in love with endurance sports,” says Lauren, “It’s a really good mind game. It takes a lot of focus to just keep on going as hard as you started out.”
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Photographs from Skechers Performance