World Champs Medal

Finding Balance While Achieving Your Goals

World Championships

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This past Sunday, Sept. 7th I participated in the Ironman 70.3 World Championships held in Mont-Tremblant, Quebec. My journey to qualify for this event took 3 years and included racing in six half ironman’s, four Olympic distance, eight Sprints and one Full Ironman.

I am a very competitive person by nature therefore my initial approach in the sport of Triathlon was that I had to be ALL in or I won’t attain my goals. I struggled with finding balance between my training and spending time with my family and friends, work, or doing activities that didn’t involve a pool, bike or running shoes.

In 2013 I checked off a couple Triathlon goals of mine. I placed first overall in the 70.3 Try Charleston and finished sub 5-hrs in two 70.3 races. While I won a few races that year, my pivotal moment came in July after I raced the Ironman 70.3 Racine in Wisconsin.

Up until that point I would rarely miss a workout. Getting in my training came before anything else in my life.  Yes I was successful at races, but something was missing from my life.  On my flight home from Wisconsin I wrote out a list of what is most important to me and learned that the “something missing” proved to be balance.

That day I made a promise to myself that I would not put Triathlon ahead of my family, friends, or work. Triathlon is my hobby; it is not my job and it should be fun. I gradually stopped obsessing about my workouts and began spending more time with my family and friends.  Of course I missed some workouts, but it was okay.  In turn, my life naturally became more balanced and I was happier than I had been in a long time.

I would be lying if I said it was no longer a goal of mine to qualify for Worlds, but it was not my sole focus. This past April I went down to Florida with a group of close friends and raced Ironman 70.3 Haines City.  I was not focused on qualifying for worlds, but rather to have fun and do my best.

When I crossed the finish line in Florida, I was so focused on finishing strong and having fun, I didn’t know I had in fact qualified for Worlds.  The moment I realized I had, I found my best friend who was also racing. We hugged, jumped up and down, screamed, laughed and later sprayed champagne.

On Sunday when I stood at the start-line, it felt surreal. I looked back at everything I had learned and experienced this past year. I thought to myself, this is it, you’re here and about to participate in an event you dreamed about. I felt so lucky. Two of my closest friends were there to cheer me on and I was racing amongst the best Triathletes in the world. I will never forget the overwhelming feeling of joy running the last 500m through the Village of Mont-Tremblant and crossing the finish line under the banner that read “Ironman 70.3 World Championships”. I had achieved my goal and I did so while living a balanced life.

2 Comments

Rita Francis

September 13, 2014 at 3:43 am - Reply

Good for you finding some balance in your life and realizing that is what you needed. Congrats on all your hard work paying off. YOU are a champion all the way, Lauren. I follow you on FB
and you’re amazing in all that you do. Don’t know where you get all the energy. After a while I
would imagine it all becomes second nature with you. Come to Hendersonville sometime with your bike. Lots of good bike riding roads or whatever they call them.. the road by my house
is a favorite one as I see the bicyclists every weekend riding by here. It is pretty treacherous
on the other side of the mountain. Take care cause I care.

Lauren Wilson

September 17, 2014 at 6:28 pm - Reply

Thanks Rita! And YES, I would LOVE to come up to Henderson, visit you and get in some riding. Hope you are well.

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