On Track to Rio- How Far Will You Go To Chase Your Dreams?

By Dylan Mah

Photo Credit: Dipna Lim-Prasad

400m hurdles national record, first woman in 16 years to deliver a track medal at the 2013 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games and 2012 London Summer Olympic Games competitor,  these are just some of the achievements that Dipna Lim-Prasad has under her belt. However, she has no intention of stopping just yet. The recent graduate from Nanyang Technological University’s Sport Science and Management programme has made the decision to train full-time with the goals of clinching a gold medal at the 2015 SEA Games and qualifying for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Summer Olympic Games.

Finding more time for rest after graduation is key in stepping up her game. “Because I’ve decided to train full-time, I am able to rest a lot more, which is crucial for me to be able to push myself at training every day,” said Dipna. “I am much fresher when it comes to training sessions and I recover quicker. This means that I can either do the same workout much more effectively or handle a heavier workload.”

Photo Credit: Tiger Balm Singapore

As with most athletes competing at the highest level, Dipna’s athletic journey is not without challenges and letdowns. She recounted her grave experience of dealing with several personal losses leading up to London 2012, which affected her preparation, and hopes to be more ready for Rio 2016. When asked about what keeps her going, the chirpy sprinter replied: “I have good and bad days just like everyone else. Sometimes I remind myself of why I chose to take this path and other days I look to my training mates and fellow Team Singapore team mates like Theresa Goh, (Saiyidah) Aisyah and Dinah (Chan). Each Team Singapore athlete has a unique story to tell about the sacrifices and obstacles they had to overcome to get to where they are today. I love hearing all their stories because they inspire me and make me want to be more like them!”

Off the track, Dipna also plays an important role in the community of local athletes. Nominated a member of the Singapore National Olympic Council (SNOC) Athletes’ Commission, Dipna fulfills her role in representing her fellow athletes within the SNOC, and also strives to champion opportunities, connect, develop and educate athletes.

However, Dipna’s most recent significant role has to be that of being the newest member to the Poh family, as she wedded fellow athlete, Poh Seng Song, in September this year. While nothing much has changed following her marriage, she is happy to add to her family, a couple more parents and siblings – and she quipped – the cat.

While it is full speed ahead for the next two years, Dipna has tentative plans to retire in 2016. Her future plans? “I help host events with Sport Singapore, give talks and coaching clinics, and bake,” she said, “I would love to see these things blossom into something bigger and greater but I’m keeping an open mind, plans change!”



Want to journey alongside Dipna? Follow her on Instagram @dipnalim and her blog at http://thetrackhome.wordpress.com .

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