Ad of the Day: Nike Celebrates the ‘Iron Nun’, an 86-Year-Old Triathlete With God on Her Side

'The only failure is not to try'

Headshot of David Griner

Next time you think you're getting a bit too creaky for an afternoon run or early morning ride, think about Sister Madonna Buder. 

The 86-year-old nun is a record-breaking Ironman triathlete and star of the newest spot in Nike's "Unlimited" campaign, created by Wieden + Kennedy Portland and running throughout the Olympics.

Much like the campaign's epic kickoff spot, the narration (from Oscar Isaac of The Force Awakens and Ex Machina fame) begins at a leisurely pace, then gets increasingly frenetic as we see the extent of Buder's athleticism.

In this case, the tongue-in-cheek narration probably muddles the ad's potency more than it amplifies it, but there's still much to love about Buder's story and the grand videography W+K brings to the table.   

If you'd like to learn more about her story without the scenery-chewing narration, definitely check out the behind-the-scenes video featuring interview footage and outtakes:

@griner David Griner is creative and innovation editor at Adweek and host of Adweek's podcast, "Yeah, That's Probably an Ad."