As a fiercely independent and passionate individual, Loren Piretra has been working tirelessly to adapt a marathon mindset into each of her multifaceted endeavors, both professional and personal. Being able to apply what she's learned firsthand in regard to setting and reaching goals has allowed her to achieve countless milestones once considered to be unobtainable, while also being able to speak from authority and expertise when it comes to helping support others. Esteemed for her work as a creator industry pioneer and storyteller, with a resume that spans the fashion, sports and tech industries, the proud New Jersey native thrives at the intersection of community, creativity and purpose, with an impassioned focus on inclusion and diversity. In tandem with Loren's professional achievements, nurturing her passion for running has gone on to become a consistent part of her daily and weekly routine. Loren completed her first marathon in 2016, laying the foundation for her work as an official pace leader and trainer for the LA Marathon. As she continues to put in countless hours of training herself, Loren is eager to keep moving forward and encouraging others at every stage and step of the way. As a member of the LA Marathon's team, Loren is grateful for the opportunity to continue to give back to a sport that has given her so much and work to provide ongoing support to those who feel the same.
How do you hope to inspire others?
Through my own experiences, as well as my time spent studying intersectional feminism and learning from those who have helped more thoroughly inform my belief system, I’ve found that people, women especially, are conditioned to “think practically.” By that, I mean that all too often we internalize that societal belief, and subsequently carry a lot of self-doubt. When I reflect on some of the most transformational moments in my life--such as moving to California, leaving a toxic job or relationship, running my first marathon--one common thread is that each was prefaced with fear of failure and later met with indescribable joy. While these peaks and valleys are an integral part of the human experience, I hope sharing my authentic self, as well as amplifying the stories of those who inspire me, can help others see that they too are capable of achieving incredibly self-fulfilling, purpose-driven victories, no matter how big or small. The practice of honoring that I am simultaneously a masterpiece and a work in progress is something that many women can relate to, and I am dedicated to holding space for the dualities that help guide my purpose in hopes to inspire.
What is your passion and why?
Being a feminist is really central to who I am. I’m really passionate about human rights, equality, and sustainability. Through running, I feel stronger and am reminded of my own strength and ability. This undeniably emotional experience becomes further ignited when I am reminded of the unifying component of running a marathon, and knowing that we’re all in it together helps serve as additional fuel in accomplishing my own personal goals. The parallels between participating in community-driven events like marathons and protests are becoming increasingly clear to me, and seeing the power of people physically coming together has helped further reinforce how crucial it is to face challenges together in order to make a revolutionary impact. On a physical level, marathon running has helped prepare me in a curious way, providing me with the tools, stamina, conditioning and voice required to participate in protesting for long periods of time. I believe wholeheartedly that the lessons I’ve learned and the skills I’ve strengthened through marathon running can be widely applicable to a variety of activities, and seeing that in action has been really rewarding, especially as a person whose passions are multifold and multidisciplinary.
What does living an active lifestyle mean to you?
It means keeping it moving... body and brain! I live in a recreational paradise (Ocean Ave. neighborhood of Santa Monica) and I create my own energy by running the beach path and Cal Incline, hiking Los Liones, skateboarding, jumping in the ocean or swimming lap lanes at SMC, taking barre classes at the gym, and walking to the farmers market. For me, I need to keep my physical activity balanced with activities that are mentally stimulating, like meditation, reading, writing, and drawing. One of my all time favorite things to do is treat myself to “double dip” of health and wellness by dropping into a meditation class (sound baths and guided group hypnotherapeutic sessions are my favorite) immediately after a solid, sweaty workout. I am undeniably my best self when I’m sweaty and feeling sharp.
Goals for 2020-2021:
This year my fitness goals are two-fold. First, I really want to become more grateful for what my body can do vs. what it looks like. I’ll admit that I am overly critical of myself and there’s no time for that. Life is too damn short, so this year, I’m making a conscious commitment to resist conversing with others over body dissatisfaction, to love myself, and to lead by example. Second, I want to be a better advocate of and champion for a more sustainable, safe, and inclusive marathon running community because running is for everyone. For starters, I want to see a better and more holistic representation of all body types, sizes, colors, abilities, and identities in marathon running, just as I see on every race day. I also want to be a better advocate for runners who are trans and/or non binary, which starts with simply acknowledging the different identifiers and pronouns these athletes use to self identify. There’s a ton of misinformation and bias out there and the best way to overcome this is to commit to learning, listening, and speaking out when we see injustice or exclusion. Another aspect of marathon running that’s top of mind for me, is sustainability. When I’m traveling (which used to be a lot more often) I’d always carry a reusable silverware set with me to avoid wasteful single use plastic, and my habits on race day should be no different. I’m embarrassed to reflect on how many cups I have used and tossed along race course for my convenience when I could simply use a handheld refillable hydration pack just as I do in training. It’s little things like this that can make a big difference when we all commit to them.