Lauren grew up in Massachusetts and was on the competitive downhill skiing team in high school and college. She says the university gym was always too crowded, so she decided to start running outdoors. She did not know anything about the sport and had no idea how far she was going. Instead, she would warm-up with a lap or two around the block and then head back inside. After a couple years of this, her parents gave her a pair of tights and a long-sleeved dry-fit shirt for Christmas. She decided that she needed to take the sport more seriously now that she had “real” running clothes. She entered a few races, and in 2013 she was shocked to win a half marathon in western Massachusetts. At that point, Lauren says she bought a watch and began incorporating harder, faster workouts into an organized training plan. At last month’s#HoustonHalfMarathon, she was the 5th female overall with a PR of 1:23:56. She is excited to see her times continue to drop as she gains experience and establishes new goals. During the day, Lauren is a Registered Dietician at the #UniversityofHouston. Her main focus is ensuring the dorms offer a variety of healthy food choices, but she has also worked to establish a bi-weekly farmers market which gives students an exciting selection of fresh, local products. Her advice to runners is similar to what she recommends for students at UH. Runners should eat a wide variety of healthy foods and avoid low-carb diets because they deplete the body of the energy required to complete tough workouts. Lauren also has a passion for animals. Her dog, Pigpen, was adopted from the #SPCA and loves to run with her in the mornings. She says he is always happy and never complains when she wakes him up at 5 a.m. to head out the door. As if running and working full time were not enough, Lauren is currently pursuing her Master’s degree in Public Health and planning a summer wedding in Massachusetts with her fiancé, Brooks!