03 Feb 2020
How Lauren Parker became the best in the world

How Lauren Parker became the best in the world

She may have been crowned world champion, but Lauren Parker never stops pushing herself to do better.

And this, she says, is the secret to her success.

Even before taking the world number one spot in 2019, Parker’s story was extraordinary.

As a promising professional triathlete and Ironman participant, Parker travelled the world competing in the sport she loved. But a freak accident during a training ride in April 2017, changed everything and left her a paraplegic.

QBE provided insurance cover for Lauren at the time of her accident and this helped give her the financial and emotional support to embark on a new chapter of her life.

“I believe that in sport and life, a lot of people can just get to that 90 per cent level. But there’s not many people that get to that 100 per cent level,” says Parker, now a QBE Ambassador.

“That last 10 per cent is really key to succeeding and performing well.”

A key element of Parker’s training involves concentrating on 10 key one percent improvements that will ultimately deliver a competitive advantage on the track and in the pool.

“Those one percenters are the key to my success,” she explains.

"[It means] doing every [training] session at 100 per cent. I don’t want to be 90 per cent. I want to be the best in the world and I want to get that Paralympic gold medal and for me to do that I need to give everything 100 per cent.

“Another one percent for me is equipment. Getting the optimal position in my racing chair and my hand cycle.

“The data is really important to me to see improvements and to know that I’m improving.”

Parker’s attitude is completely focused on these small, but critical, opportunities to improve.

“I never settle for 'it’ll be okay’ or ‘it’s just enough’ because I believe there’s always that extra level that I can go. That’s what it takes to be the best."

Parker will use this approach as she prepares to represent Australia at the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo during 2020.

Read about Lauren Parker’s year to remember