Covid-19, a race nobody wins alone!

After the first races of 2020 the road was open for a serious springseason for our athletes! With wins, podiums and other excellent performances in road cycling and triathlon races in Spain and Belgium seasonstart was promissing!

Today Belgium is in lockdown untill April 19th. Possibly longer.

Covid-19, coming from China… in which the communist regime kept quiet about it before spreading it all over the world.
Countries such as Italy and Spain got seriously infected first, we have some strong athletes living and racing mostly in Spain. They warned me before my own government did about the seriousness of this virus. It made us go in lockdown concerning all lactate testing and contact with athletes days before our own governement decided to do.
The late responses of several governements in Europe are to call criminal at the very least. In USA the spreading now is only beginning….

This said, to provide background…,means that as all other athletes around the world athletes have no races in sight between March 14th and probably June 1st. Big organisations are cancelling and postponing races wisely to be secure and don’t go bankrupt when not postponing or cancelling in time.
Smaller organisations probably will be held easier/sooner.

March 13th I have sent out an e-mail to our athletes to provide some background information and also to not panic about the covid-19 virus, keep cool and keep sight of what’s ahead and possible. Not on what will not be, that makes no sense at all. Not in the past, not now and not in the future.

Our athletes always work from a macrocycle which we put quite some time in, to gather and to look/find fitting races for that particular athlete.
The bad thing is, that a few days will not happen as planned. The good thing is that 99%of this ‘cycle’ will happen. Every decent physiologist and High performance coach will see the light in this matter. ‘Instagramcoaches and athletes’ will not, they will bump into the mirror.

Don’t think, being an athlete, that Covid-19 strikes you down because a race is not happening. Covid-19 is harming many people in more severe ways physically, psychologically and economically or a combination of these.

Athletes will be in training modus for a longer period, but no athlete has become a worse athlete because of good balanced training. An athlete can become a worse athlete because of racing too much or training badly.

Deze afbeelding heeft een leeg alt-atribuut; de bestandsnaam is macro.jpg

From day1 of Belgium’s lockdown we have seen passing stupid things athletes started doing. Swimming in freezing cold water, riding 400km rides, going to simulate bikeraces with friends through traffic,….
Maybe a 400km ride ‘can’ fit in a training program for some athletes, when well organised in your trainingschedule. Not ‘out of the blue’ as a panicking frog caught in a glass bowl.
This ‘caught-frog-jumping-behaviour’ we can notice with athletes doing suddenly extreme long rides, extremely intensive ‘training’ or other….
We advice our athletes to stay calm, stick to the plan…and race later. Balance in training is key towards performance, both phsyically and mentally.
Even our athletes in total lockdown in Spain and Colombia, where all training is done inside the houses or garden keep their calm, focus and will smack down the hammer hard!

Past week I posted Sergio’s 300m lap in his garden, but many more athletes are being creative right now. Javier (Kona 2019 AG athlete) is running a 95m lap in the parkingbasement of the appartment he lives in in Colombia.
This in contrast with athletes ‘thinking’ they have a tough time because they are in need seeking attention by posting photos of themselves in sufferrooms with wifi, apps, fans, airco, food and all drinks. Those athletes have luxury now in training, no sufferroom ;-). Many more have ‘real’ sufferrooms such as the garden or basement…!

Our athletes/cyclists can keep their cool and look forward, not ‘a’ race is postponed. Season is postponed. But there will be a time after Covid-19. Training smart now, will result in performing better later! Of that I am sure.
There are quite some professionel triathletes who don’t count many racing days throughout a season, that’s never a problem.

In Cycling, the number of racing days is often much higher, but even for cyclists. Think about how you entered past seasons after a good winterprep? Our riders always went for podia from day 1. They will after Covid-19. Of not many things we are sure in these days…of that I am :-)!

On a very positive note:

  • If the Kona world championships will happen in 2020, our athletes already will be represented because some athletes still realised qualifying before this pandemic.
  • In cycling first podiumplaces in Belgium and Spain are already taken.
  • No rider/triathlete can have an excuse of not having enough base and specific preparation towards the races
  • Our athletes who had Corona so far all recovered well, let’s keep it that way and hope medical experts find solutions soon.

My thoughts these days are going out to the people in worse physical conditions such as people with underlying diseases, older people and our athletes or partners of our athletes in medical jobs such as nurses,doctors and many others entering ‘the battlescene’ day by day!
The athlete is at the sideline now, training well, but most of all a supporter of mostly his biggest supporter!

Ciao and keep distance,


TSPB Storm arriving at the start of the season!

Storm ‘Dennis’ Arrived in Belgium!Bad news for our athletes because of cancelled races, but…a macrocyclus stays a macrocyclus and thinking problem solving is a good skill to develop as an athlete…So changes of racelocations and looking for races who did go on!
🇪🇸No problem in this for Anthony! Tenerife is about sun!Yesterday 4th in Tenerife and today stage 2 (final stage for him)! With a 24K climb today wouldn’t be easy and opponents such as Davide Rebellin did well after yesterday and did a strong performance on the climb (~ +-350NP)! This results in a 3rd place in today’s stage and 3rd place in GC! The start of the season, is always important! And our riders didn’t miss it!

Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: 3 mensen, lachende mensen, staande mensen, schoenen, lucht en buiten
Anthony 3rd in Tenerife

🇧🇶 Jinn was racing in Venlo, as Belgian cycling cancelled all races for security reasons. In The Netherlands that was not the case. Jinn is looking for shape towards the first important elite races and did well. 6th place today!
🇧🇪 In Belgium many races cancelled, but there’s no storm harder than the ‘TSPB-Storm’, and so it was today!!
Wim DC could change the cancelled duathlon in Hofstade for the 12K running race in Deinze! Strong as this master is he takes 3rd overall!
In Kasterlee Iron Tony races in the 16K road/field race and finishes just aside the podium on 4th!!!
Trail des Z’amoureux also in the Ardens, with trees falling left and right of the runners this must have been one of the most challenging trailruns in Belgium. The pure smell of sports and nature. Great adrenalineshot also!
Nice results also of our athletes racing in Kiewit-Hasselt, with Raymond, Julie and Roel on 10K and Geoffrey taking top 10 in the 5K running race!

At the beach the strongest winds in the whole country were measured with over 100km/h gusts of wind…but that doesn’t stop ‘Flandriens’ from duathlon racing and shape chasing! I already knew our athletes have the best spirit in the world, but today they astonished again!
Our female athletes at the starting line…made a clean sweep by taking all three steps of the podium! Emelie entering T1 first, just before Inge, Hannah a bit further! Inge took the lead on her beloved trails and Emelie kept strong in 2nd! Meanwhile strong cyclist Hannah moved up to 3rd to never let go this place anymore! Inge takes 1st, Emelie 2nd!

Clean sweep in the female race!

In the male race our sharp athletes were afraid of getting blown away…but that fear was not necessary! Robby confirms his strong testing results and huge progression to finish 5th! Lesly, finally got his chance to race a crossduathlon in Belgium and took it with both hands in these tough conditions by finishing on 10th after a close combat with strong Kristof on 12! Closely followed by Jesse in 17th position (not the coach ;-))

Lesly racing towards 10th!

In the masters race Bart takes 4th as one of the older masters! While the much younger master Frederick also shows the big steps he made past months finishing 9th.

Happy 12th today for Kristof!

Sandman inferno also has a long version of this race, in these conditions the athlete racing it deserve not less than a statue! Steven and Sander survived these conditions and Sander could finally almost get into top 10…finishing 12th! Well done!

🇨🇦In Canada Ironman Vadim races the Montreal 10K, and does this in style…taking 3rd overall! 2 months to go before his first 70.3race of the season in Florida, USA.

And for those only drinking a hot coffee and not challenging the weather today! U’ve missed one hell of a big storm ;)But don’t fear, there will be one…every weekend from now!

📸 Steven Hamerlinck, thanks (y) (y) #TSPB #Jessevnsportscoaching

Recap of a great 2019, onwards to 2020!

While the bottles of champagne are getting uncorked, glasses get filled…it’s time to have a look to what pas season brought to us!
Evaluation is key to succces, looking in the mirror and being honest for you and the surrounding people to get to the best results. The hours athletes train must not be occupational therapy but results-oriented. Whether this reflects in personal growth, feeling good as performance wise.

2019 kicked of with victories and podiums in some runningraces in prep or as A-races for our athletes. Also our crossduathletes, mountainbikeriders and cyclocrossriders were under steam from the moment January and February began, victories in both disciplines confirmed this.
Of course our annual after NY groupsession also was reflecting on the way our athletes were going to enter spring season.

Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: een of meer mensen, fiets en buiten
Klaas winning after a big lead from start untill finish
Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: een of meer mensen en fiets
In Asia Tine could take 3rd in Chiang Mai in January 19

When February came to an end, our road athletes and cyclists could show their power for the first time! With immediately strong results in cycling of Anthony, Dries, Tibo and Svenne who played a role for the podium from day 1 untill 9months later in the last races of the season!

In Triathlon the early season races such as Tenerife (1st AG, 9th Pro incl) gave a good insight in the way our athletes were going to perform later that season. With victories in several crossduathlons an trailruns in the beginning of spring the season couldn’t start better.

Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: een of meer mensen en buiten
Alejandro winning the AG race in Tenerife early in the season, finishing 9th Profield included.
Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: 2 mensen, fietsende mensen, fiets en buiten
Anthony had an excellent season with an early season win in France, but also winning races in Belgium and Germany

From April on all roadcyclists and triathletes were ready to go!
With in triathlon Kona qualification in Ironman South Africa, 3rd in place in the duathlon nationals (and 1st master) and winning the regional championships Time Trial our athletes aimed very well towards the first series of championships.
In triathlon, podiumplaces in Belgium, The Netherlands and France were earned. In cycling our athletes kept winning and taking podiumplaces, from juniors untill elite riders. For Bram a frustrating period by missing qualification for the Elite world championships mountainbike twice…by 1 spot! But perseverance kept him going and a few months later was capable of taking this qualification with both hands! In junior category Andres takes several podiums in the MTB marathons.

Geen fotobeschrijving beschikbaar.
Inge taking 3rd on the nationals duathlon Long distance (1st master)

May traditionally is the launch of the Ironmanraces, with Bert (Pro) and Pirmin (AG) our athletes performed great from the start of the IM season with Pirmin taking the Hawaii slot. An example followed later that month by Javier (IM Cairns), Vadim and Sam (IM Boulder). These athletes, together with Alejandro (2nd AG IM South Africa) were going to race Ironman Hawaii 2019. Pirmin (3rd), Vadim (3rd) and Sam (1st) also could mount the podium in their qualifying races. In Bould it was Cai, getting on the podium but missing her slot by a hair.

But not only the Full distance world championships in Kona were a main goal for our athletes. Hannah and Dave succeeded in qualifying for the Ironman 70.3 worlds in Nice, France by putting down a remarkable race in Staffordshire, UK.

As the season continued and in both cycling and triathlon our athletes kept going strong and win races.
Our youngest triathlete Rens mounted on the podium in his first 70.3 race in Lahti, Finland, while our professional triathletes took top 10 in Ironman Vitoria-Gasteiz ( Sergio 9th, Bert 10th).

Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: Sergio Bolado, staan en buiten
What a stunning race of Sergio and Bert in Ironman Vitoria, almost side by side they finished 9th and 10th Pro both sub 8h40!

July was a busy racing period in Ironman with many races such as Frankfurt, Klagenfurt, Zürich, Hamburg, Vichy!

In Zürich Steven and Tony put down a smashing result. Tony realised to finish 21st overall in this Ironman classic!

Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: 1 persoon, staan, schoenen en buiten
Tony taking 21st overall (4thAG) in Ironman Zürich

Summer also is the moment elite riders take part in several stage races followed by some (pro)kermesse races. Our elite riders could battle within the first places of the peloton in those races.

In the same period Bram finally got himself qualified for the UCI Mountainbike world championships, where he was going to race against the best ever riders such as Nino Schürter.

Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: fietsende mensen en buiten
Bram on recon in the UCI world championships Mountainbike

And what to say about Svenne, taking 3rd in the UCI world championships for Masters after breaking his femoral head. A very tough preparation on the Turbo and off the turbo, with almost no races and a coach saying: ‘Pain is French bread’ but also joining the man in his first race with the healed hip…is not only a physical but also mentally TOPperformance ;-)!

Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: 3 mensen, staande mensen
Svenne 5 months after a femoral head fracture, shining strong

Another comeback-man this season was Hans, for most people he never was away…but somewhere he was involved in an ‘impingement’ and had to slowly build his way back. In his first race of the season the performance was already very good…but what he realised furthermore in Jabbeke and in his main goal this season Ironlakes was EXCELLENT!
Ironlakes, a full distance triathlon with over 2000D+ on the bike and 380D+ on the run was going the be the race to see if Hans was back already or net yet totally…it seems he was! He won by far in this tough race and also won his 2nd full distance triathlon in his career. Who has?

Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: 1 persoon, glimlacht, tekst
Hans taking the win in Ironlakes, Belgium

Winning Ironlakes was excellent, the 6th full distance win so far for our athletes…but this inspired with excellent performances in the Ironman70.3 world champs of Hannah And Dave and more 70.3 races in autumn, our athletes kept performing well untill the last 70.3 races of the season in Lanzarote and Turkey!
Only 3 weeks after the win of Hans in Belgium, it was Ironman Pro athlete Sergio who took his first full distance win in his career in Guadiana, Spain!
This in the same style of Hans, leading and dominating the race!

Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: 3 mensen, inclusief Sergio Bolado, lachende mensen, staande mensen, lucht en buiten
Sergio winning in Guadiana, full distance!

In Ironman Barcelona our athletes did very well, our agegroupers were all heading towards a PB race and Bert, starting in the Pro race. Was on for his 3rd(!) Ironman this season and how! Another time confirming his place in the mid-field of the prorace with another fast time as result!

Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: een of meer mensen, wolk, buiten en natuur
Bert puts down a huge season with 3 Ironman race in which he confirmed each time!

Traditionally the Ironman World championships are held only 1 week after Barcelona!
Our 5 athletes Pirmin (Swi), Sam (Bel), Javier (Col), Alejandro (Spain) and Vadim (Can) did their best from start untill finish. Going into the race in Kona always brings a bit of stress and uncertain factors. But the results were satisfying with top 10 place for Sam, but also a sick Alejandro who vomited from Km 1 on the bike but maintained and could make the stomach work again at the end of the bike to finish with a 3h15 marathon. Javier learned a lot in his first race in Kona about humidity and travelling. While Pirmin and Vadim, 2 experienced racers had the time of their life and know what their working points are approaching Kona again.

For Vadim this was a seesaw to Kona 2020, because only 6weeks later he realised the impossible by finishing 4th in Ironman Arizona (US) and taking his slot 1 year in front!

In autumn cyclocross restarted, crossduathlons restarted and our athletes took podium in several races such as Wetteren, Damme, Malonne, Maldegem,…

Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: Bart De Beul, staan

In ‘Hel van Kasterlee’, (15K run – 110K MTB – 30K run) our athletes were alive in the race and at the sideline! We saw Stijn, Bart, Lucian and Hans black and full of mud all day, but at the finishline we could somehow still recognize a big smile 🙂

Afbeelding kan het volgende bevatten: 3 mensen, inclusief Stijn Severyns, staande mensen

With the groupsessions of last months we can say 100% sure that in 2020 the motivation, consistency and spirit is burning more than ever! Now it’s up to our athletes to ‘Train smart, perform better’!

CU all in 2020, winners will be winners!