A couple of weeks ago Nike launched “Unlimited” a new campaign to coincide with the 2016 Rio Games. The series of spots recognize the “perseverance of the world’s greatest athletes and underscores a summer of sport.”
In its most recent video, “Unlimited Youth”, Nike features Sister Madonna Buder, who at 86 is the oldest person to ever complete an Ironman triathlon.
Sister Madonna, who is often referred to as the “Iron Nun”, was first introduced to running at age 47 by a priest who championed running as a way to harmonize the mind, body and soul. After a couple of decades of hitting the pavement, Sister Madonna was burning out on the sport until she discovered triathlon. “That was the salvation,” she says in the spot’s behind-the-scenes video.
In 1985, at 65 years old, she completed her first Ironman World Championship triathlon in Hawaii, and has since finished more than 45 triathlons 40 of them Ironman races.
In discussing the importance of trying, Sister Madonna shares “There a lot of times that I had to think about failures and not reaching the goal that I may have set for myself. Then I realized that the only failure is not to try, because your effort in itself is a success.”