You Must Be Willing To Lose To Win!

You Must Be Willing To Lose To Win!

Gill Fullen’s 2017 season so far stands at:

  • 1 British Duathlon Age Group Title
  • Champion Outlaw Half
  • 3rd Outlaw Holkham
  • Champion Outlaw Full

And let’s not forget the Outlaw Full course record 9.44.48! Gill is the first athlete in the UK to hit the Double for Outlaw race wins.

For me this is an impressive CV of racing results by anyone’s standards on the UK Triathlon circuit. When you consider the fact Gill is 53, those results are phenomenal. Now what’s beyond phenomenal is that less than 12 months ago Gill was battling Breast Cancer!

It’s obvious Gill is a special individual. Back in may I wrote about her Journey when she won the Outlaw Half.

Now she’s just broken a course record and won the Outlaw full on nothing more than 70.3 training. How good could she be? While Gill is talented and impresses me week in week out, it’s amazing to think there is still room to improve!

She does the training, I just conduct a plan for her. And believe me there was a LOT of questioning of the plan leading into this race. Even up until the day before the race we had a good debate about how it might go. My message has always been to put herself in a position where Gill can use her natural mental and physical strength – draw the others into trading punches then the fight is on.

And what a fighter she is! When she listens her application is second to none and the run in to the Outlaw Full has been about learning and listening. This lady is one special individual and for me is an inspiration for not just women in sport, but people in general. I feel honoured and blessed to work with such a character.

A Swim PB and a Bike PB and an Overall PB for an Iron distance race on 70.3 training is amazing. We’re not going to overly push and will train according to what the body can handle. But watch out people for if Gill is at 100% strength to pack her real punch it’s going to be something special.

Perry Agass has been a professional coach for over 10 years and has worked with some of the best coaches and athletes in the world. He is a passionate, motivated and very thorough with excellent results.

Perry regularly holds camps in Cyprus for all levels of athletes.

You must be willing to lose to win…

You must be willing to lose to win…

There’s been a lot written recently about Gill Fullen’s battle with Cancer, her comeback and most recently her victory at Outlaw Half by various media. Therefore, I felt it’s only right that as her Coach I now should write down my own thoughts.

Gill’s journey is one that is very special for so many reasons without her recent battles. She is an incredible athlete at Age Group level and one that you could argue ‘what if?’ or ‘if only’ she found the sport earlier.

Gills a multiple Champion at Age Group level, and without being disrespectful to other competitors, she finds it easy as there is nothing Gill likes to do more than race hard. That’s not saying others don’t, it’s just Gill does have those rare qualities only the best seem to have at the higher end of the sport.

When Gill came to me to coach her I had one condition.
‘You take yourself out of your comfort zone and walk away from all the easy wins you’ve had.  ‘WHAT?’ was the look I got from Gill.
I could tell Gill had never had anyone say this to her before and I went on, ‘COME ON you want to find that extra 10%, don’t you? And see where you could really go in this sport?’.
‘Yes, your right, but I’m too old’, she said.
I told her age is just a number, and now we do things my way.
She looked at me with shock, and said ‘We’ll see, so many have tried before you’.
It was then I knew I had a fighter on my hands.

This was the start of a great relationship between Gill and I, we are very straight with each other. We sat down over a year ago and set a plan, the plan was to move away from the Age Group mind-set, and step up to another level and test yourself again. The plan was wins at Outlaws, amongst others, but what wasn’t in the plan was the big ‘C’… Yes Cancer.

When Gill told me, if I’m honest my reaction perhaps wasn’t normal. I didn’t feel sorry for Gill, I don’t think she needed that, she needed someone to say, ‘Well come on, we’ll fight this together enough’. People around you say the right things, so I’m going to be objective and challenging just the way Gill likes things to be.

Gill responded in a way only a real fighter would. Days/weeks and months past and the motivation was amazing, she never gave up and got stronger with motivation. Yes of course there were downs, but everyone is human; Gill responded to each challenge with grit and in such a touching way. she is gifted with not only talent, but in true spirit and determination and this carried through the whole time, which for many was and is inspiring.

Gill in Kona

Typical of Gill the texts started flowing back in, asking me about training, telling me what she had done and what she was doing, each week and month she was doing a bit more but not without setbacks. In true Gill fashion, she kept on pushing and became stronger and stronger, sending me texts “this isn’t going to beat me.” Continuously hounding me to start training properly so we could get back to our original plan, and when those texts started to proceed about races for the future I thought Gill was now ready to plan for the 2017 season ahead.

Gill’s determination and courage to beat off one of the biggest battles of her life is one that deserves enormous respect. When most would have crumbled, Gill stepped up and looked at Cancer right in the eye and challenged back, trading punches that was a survival technique, not knowing if one of those thrown could be the last.

As serious as it sounds, we are talking about the fact that Gill is one special human to be able to show the way and fight for life, not just in the sport she loves so much. Triathlon has given Gill the chance to down her true character.

Gill is a very talented, and gifted in many areas, but is yet to become the complete athlete. Yes, Gill can still improve, age for me is just a number and if you’re good enough then why not give it your best shot.


Perry Agass has been a professional coach for over 10 years and has worked with some of the best coaches and athletes in the world. He is a passionate, motivated and very thorough with excellent results.

Perry regularly holds camps in Cyprus for all levels of athletes.

Communication is Key

Communication is Key

Communication is so fundamentally important in the coach/athlete relationship –  It is the key for progression and success.

From day one, athletes and coaches begin a journey, through both observation and responses a level of communication is created. It’s the start of a testing time, where many questions are asked from both sides. There needs to be trust and belief. Understanding each other also requires patience. With good communication these can be managed, so that both parties are clear on the tasks that lay ahead.

Athlete’s need to be open and honest to what their goals and targets are. It is also important they understand their capabilities, and if their expectations are realistic in order to stand any chance of successful performance in the future. This needs to be communicated between the athlete and coach.

Writing out a training plan is the start of the communication. The coach will watch, listen and learn about the individual and what their needs are. Through writing and talking we gain a level of communication, but it is also through the observation of body language (a technique ofter overlooked) that can give coaches the greatest of feedback of all, with no words spoken. Reading and observing athletes without even speaking to them takes a level of understanding, observation, skill and time to get right; but through various different responses your communication is key to achieve the right balance and the best athlete mentality possible.

Full time Trisutto squad in Cyprus runs year round with Coach Perry.

Every individual athlete is different in what type of communication they need and what type they best respond to. The key to building the athlete coach relationship is how the coach responds to the athlete’s reactions. It is very important to understand when and how to force an action, to in turn provoke a reaction.

We all respond differently and our characters give off different reactions. Observation and making an appropriate response back and forth is fundamental in the ongoing development of the relationship. It is important to be able to use and adapt different methods of communication and strike a balance to what’s needed and when. It is also important to understand how to manage the athletes character and develop a style for each individual by observing, listening and learning.

Having my own squad, currently based in Cyprus, I know that the type of communication I choose is very important for the squad dynamics, the squad progression and the individual success of every athlete in it.  I am forever learning about each individual and through observation of body language my understanding to where each athlete’s mood is, from session to session, day by day is ongoing. Using different communication skills and acknowledging that no two peopler are alike, is so important, and my actions as a coach has a major impact, not only on the individual, but on the whole squad.


Perry Agass is a coach based out of Paphos, Cyprus.
Join Perry in Cyprus for Triathlon camps and Squad Training Workouts. online triathlon coaches are available to help improve your performance here.

End of Season Racing

End of Season Racing

Daz Parker proving she has what it takes – overall winner at the Pure Triathlon 226 in Spain.

Race Recap from Coach Perry Agass:

Daz Parker has really been working hard all season and is learning quickly. Coming from a Pro Xterra background pushing to Endurance has been a big test for her but one that she is taking on very well.

This weekend saw Daz take on her first Iron Distance race. So far this season Daz has picked up a couple of podiums at the 70.3 distance, but we decided that we should see how Daz faired at Iron so we chose the Pure Triathlon 226 race.

It wasn’t about winning/getting a podium or even a time, it was more to the fact of getting it done but doing it to the best of Daz’s ability and seeing how well she could do.

The Swim started and Daz coming off a 2 week training block in Gran Canaria was in good shape, so she hit it hard and it paid off exiting the water first female. Out of T1 and on to the bike and Daz put the hammer down and really went for it (and maybe that was why she got 2 punctures ha!) but although that slowed her down it didn’t stop her. She had work to do and was still yet to find the true test on the run, did she have the run legs? Answer YES she did, crossing the line as first female overall, an amazing result for Daz and a massive breakthrough. Well done.

Matt Leeman also took on the Iron 226 Pure Triathlon race in Valencia Spain. Matt has had a solid year and it’s what I would class as a building year.

The swim got underway and Matt pushed the pace in the rough sea swim where he exited in first place in just under 55min. Onto the bike (Matt’s weak point, but we are working on it, so work in progress would be a good summary) he worked hard and held onto the lead coming into T2, where Matt found himself in very new territory in this position. He knew he needed to worked hard now to hold off the athletes hunting him down, but unfortunately after 12/15miles on the run the wheels came off for Matt, and he eventually decided to bail out. There is still work to be done, lots of it, but we are making head way and learning quickly with Matt; the road is never straight to gain success.

Race Recap from Coach Edith Niederfriniger:

Oriana takes the win and qualifies for 70.3 World Champs in Turkey.

This past weekend I had only 2 athletes racing, but they did very well 🙂

Oriana Heer: 70.3 Turkey, 1st place W35-39 4:50, this means that Oriana already qualified for the 70.3 Worlds 2017 in Chattanooga! This was our goal, so we are really happy with it!

Stefano Pavan, only 3 weeks after IM Barcelona raced the Venice marathon (Venice, Italy is his hometown): 3:11.15 for him. Considering the very short time between ironman and marathon it was another good performance. Now  it’s time to rest a little bit.

Race Recap from Coach Jo Spindler

guy_evansxterra2016 AG XTERRA World Champion, Guy Evans!

At the XTERRA World champs, Guy Evans has a sensational race, wins his age group and is 2016 World Champ now! It was a very tough race, with the bike course too rain-soaked to to ride at many place. Guy came out of the water at around 9th position, worked himself towards 2nd position in T2 to finally run the first guy down and win the title. It was a case of keeping cool, managing equipment, and waiting for the run. Guy told us: “I knew going into the race that Jo had made me super strong. With that residual fitness, the harder the race, the better. And the race was HARD! I had to chase down one guy on the run, but I had power left in the tank to do so. I left T2 going full gas, knowing that my superior fitness would carry me through. After an epic swim/bike – no way anyone was better prepared for a hard run than me.“ When Guy collected his bike after the race, he found his front tyre flat. This was just is day. The gods were really smiling on him. Well done Guy, very happy and very proud of you!

Race Recap from Coach Mateo Mercur:

lc_miamiTop 10 for LC at Ironman 70.3 Miami.

70.3 Miami was the perfect location for LC to race on her birthday. Miami provided her favorite weather and conditions: tropical climate, warm water, with heat and humidity on race day.

LC’s instructions were simple. Nail the swim, stay positive on the bike, and blast the run. A solid swim that had her at the front of the second pack and exiting the water in 8th position. The plan for the bike was to stay focused and confident but also to fight to keep her competitors in view. LC began the run in 20th position and unleashed on the field. LC took advantage of her strength and ran down over half of her competitors to cross the line in 9th.

Happy Birthday LC. Your top 10 finish in a stacked field was a fair replacement for 100×100 in the pool. Next weekend continues the tropical campaign with 70.3 Los Cabos. When you get back, we can talk about those hundred 100s.

Race Recap from Coach Mat O’Halloran:

Top step of the Podium for Paolo in the UAE

This past Friday, Dubai-based Filipino swim coach Paolo Mangnilinan sealed the top spot of the podium in his age group and 6th overall at the Oceanic Sprint Series Triathlon in the United Arab Emirates. After a strong swim near the front with good swimmers, Pao backed it up with a very solid bike split and then ran very well off the bike, to close one of his best executions ever.

This comes off the back of a bit of travel earlier in the week and a tough race last weekend, where he managed to learn from the obstacles he faced, and adjust them for this performance. Now one more race next Friday to cap off 3 consecutive weekends of racing!

Jong – Photo Credit :Ryan Ruiz

Recent Kona qualifier Felipe “Jong” Sajulga, joined the local leg of the very popular Milo marathon series, lining up for the 21 KM event. He stuck to the plan, with a conservative start, let his legs loosen up and found a good rhythm in the middle, to run himself into the top 10, making several passes in the final quarter of the race.

To top it all off, he earned a new PR for the half marathon in 1h25, as well to feeling good between Ironman Taiwan and Ironman Langkawi. To polish off his weekend, he did a “flush run” in the evening, for good measure, to speed up recovery and maintain the overall volume.

Race Recap from Coach Rafal Medak:

Good Job Ana (right) – 2nd place category finish in Spain

On Sunday Ana Berenguel Antler raced in the Spanish Long Distance Championship (4km swim, 120km bike and 30km run).  After a very successful IM Copenhagen she took couple of weeks rest and we started the buildup for the race. However, all that could have turned against Ana did – additional work commitment meant she had much less time to train and then a sickness in a worst possible time. As a result she went to the race with only 2 long rides in her legs. This didn’t stop her from putting a good fight. After a very choppy and tiring swim she followed the coach’s instructions and rode conservatively loosing some time to top woman in her AG. She did not give up though, she gave it all during the final discipline and ran into 2nd place. A Spanish Vice-Champion in her age group sounds quite nice! A performance showing the resilience and determination of champions and well deserved podium.

Another PB for Krzysztof, this time over a Half Marathon. Photo Credit: MaratonyPolskie.PL

Few weeks ago we wrote about Krzysztof Machnicki’s 5km and 10km run PBs. I have indicated that I expect more to come from him in the near future. He didn’t want to settle on 10k PB this autumn and asked if it was possible to run a good half marathon in 4 weeks. It was a big task as Krzysztof’s training to date did not consider running such a distance so soon. We approached it in a slightly different way continuing the speed and strength training but slightly extending the sessions and adding 30 min jogs where it fit well into the overall plan.

The result – a massive half marathon PB in Bydgoszcz on Sunday: Overall 37th place, 21st in M30-39 category, finishing time: 01:25:47 and over 6 minutes improvement on 1:32 he run before we started working together. Congratulations on a very well paced and executed race.

Race Recap from Coach Lisbeth Kristensen:

Well done To Fernando!

This weekend, I had Fernando Palhares racing the Long Distance Brazilian Champs. It was a bit of a bizarre race with lots of changes within the last minute! Even the the medal ceremony got rescheduled without telling the athletes! It was a tough day, a non wetsuit swim with lots of waves and a hot bike and run!

Fernando toughed it out and came 3rd in his age group and he’s now qualified for 2017 ITU Long Distance World Champs to be held in Penticton – Canada in August.

Race Recap from Coach Susie Langley:

Celebrations on the podium at Challenge Aruba

Just an island hopper for Mirjam Weerd to travel over and race the inaugural Challenge Aruba. Somewhat a ‘home’ race for Mirjam, it was pleasing to see her pace herself well and push through strongly at the end of the run to finish in 3rd place. A really solid performance, well done Mirjam 🙂

Not a bad location for a race – Xterra World Championships in Maui, Hawaii

Big Congratulations to Ferdi Rust who raced the World Xterra Champs in Maui on Sunday. Ferdi’s preparation for the race was disrupted with a nasty cold a couple of weeks out, which unfortunately resurfaced again in race week. However race morning Ferdi felt good and ready to start. Racing slightly within himself, he reported back that overall it was a good experience from which he leant a lot; as for the bike course, Ferdi described much of it as ‘a mud mountain hike with my bike on my back’!

Race Recap from Coach Robbie Haywood:

Jason celebrating is first Ironman finish afterwards with his greatest supporters

Jason Ramdeen raced in his first Ironman at North Carolina. A great 53 minute swim set him up for a super day.  The bike was cut short to 80km *** , and Jason backed it up with a solid 3 hour 25 minute marathon to take 7th place in his category and 42nd overall.  A super way to debut at this distance.  Once again sharing the experience with his two greatest supporters, wife Efua and young son Blaise, who participated in the Iron Kids event the day before, and is set to follow in his fathers footsteps!

*** due to devastating local flooding in the area during the previous weeks, that saw many local residents lose their homes. While disappointing for some, the impact on competitors minimal in comparison.

Andrea Rudin raced in the Muttenzer Herbstlauf 10km road race near Basel, Switzerland. Recording her best time ever on this course, and right on her PR for 10km, Andrea did super as she enjoys some fun events while we prepare for 2017 triathlon season. As per usual, to make sure we had a good training day out of a fun even, Andrea did a 5km warm up and 5km cool down, to make a nice good run day, and followed up with an easy bike turbo later in the day to loosen the run muscles. Fun off season training with purpose 🙂

Congratulations to all our athletes competing this weekend. online triathlon coaches are available to help improve your performance here.

European and British Titles!

European and British Titles!

Kiera Tippett 5th and Seb Garry 1st at the European Triathlon Championships

Seb Garry becomes a Double European Age Group Champion in the sprint Duathlon and Triathlon at just 16 years of age! It was only a couple of weeks ago Seb picked up the Age Group Sprint Duathlon title in Kalkar Germany. This weekend saw him take on the challenge of the Triathlon in Lisbon, a Title that we had planned for last October. So the pressure was on! But Seb has been improving all the time with a great work ethic towards the targets we set.

Seb_EuropeansSeb winning in Lisbon.

Seb’s been in great form at all 3 disciplines but a couple of things went wrong at the start for him, at the gun his goggles got ripped off, so rather than panic he stopped and put them back on losing vital seconds off the leaders. However he made good ground going through the field and gaining back on the leaders. Into transition going into the bike he struggled to get his foot into his bike shoe losing again more seconds on the leaders and down by around 1min 45.

However, he put his head down and pushed hard to gain on the leaders, coming in 5th off the bike. With the leaders in his sights he pushed all the way to the end running an impressive 16.25 (5km) off the bike coming in 1st in his age group and 3rd overall. I think everyone would agree this is an impressive display by one of Trisutto’s youngest athletes at just 16! He as a very bright future.

Matt_Leeman_recapMatt Leeman in action at the Outlaw Half.

Matt Leeman after a great winter raced Outlaw Half this weekend and was up against 2 previous winners so the challenge was on. He exited the water 2nd and after a solid bike lost some ground and dropped some positions to come out of T2 in 7th. He worked hard and was gaining fast on the run climbing back up to 4th overall. I’m really pleased with this performance from Matt and it’s given him a great platform now to build on.

Kiera Tippett raced in the British Champs last weekend and it was a fantastic performance, she recently got announced as the British Champion over a DQ fault which is a great result and only adds to the performance here. Competing this weekend in the Euros in Lisbon added another good performance coming 5th in her Age Cat.

Laura_recap2nd fastest bike split for Laura.

Laura Fidler is continuing to rebuild after a really bad bike accident just 1 month ago and was unable to put the work in she would have liked before the Europeans. However she grafted her way to 6th in her age category, getting the 2nd fastest bike split on the day. She has given herself a very good start to the season and one we can build on now with her chosen 70.3 distance.

Race Recap from Coach Susie Langley:

A very happy Mariana Andrade after a great performace at Ironman BrazilA very happy Mariana Andrade after a great performance at Ironman Brazil.

Mariana Andrade started her season off in fine style on Sunday, lining up for her 9th appearance at Ironman Brazil, which now also doubles as the Ironman South America Championships.

Held in her hometown of Florianopolis, this is a very special race for Mari and she showed much grit and determination to finish in a fantastic 6th place in the Elite womens field.

Mariana is the head coach of a large triathlon team in Florianopolis and spends many hours each week on-deck training her team. She had many fans on Sunday supporting the hometown coach and it is wonderful to see how she has inspired her athletes with such a courageous performance out on the race course also.

Race Recap from Coach Mat O’Halloran:

Bintan Podium - photo credit Bintan TriSuperb performance by Andy Wibowo! Photo credit: Bintan-Tri

This past weekend on the resort Island of Bintan in Indonesia, local hero Andy Wibowo managed to defend his title from last year, holding off athletes from Australia and Europe. After a tied for 1st place swim, he took charge on the bike leg and then ran strongly under the hot sun. His finish time of 2h02:54 was one of the fastest ever recorded on the course.

Jong - photo credit Steven Riwar5 wins in a row for Jong Sajulga. Photo credit: Steven Riwar

Top Filipino age grouper Felipe “Jong” Sajulga of Team Caltex Delo Tri Bukidnon, won his 5th strait Durianman Olympic Distance event, in the beautiful city of Davao in the Mindanao region. This came off the back of a heavy couple weeks of training. In fact, Jong was seen after the race doing a 3 hours uphill ride towards his home, to shake out his legs and maintain the volume, as he prepares for his next race: Challenge Roth.

Race Recap from Coach Edith Niederfiniger:

EdithRecap211 minute PB for Sara Platini.

At the Triathlon Sprint Idroscalo – Milan (Italy) Sara Platini was 2nd in the W30-34 category with a new PB 1:10 (before 1:21 !!!). Great improvement, very happy with this result!

EdithRecap1Victory for Paola!

Paola Bonfreschi, triathlon olympic no draft Barberino (Italy): 1st  W45-49 in 2:52.23 (Paola placed also 10th overall!)

Saverio Venturelli, triathlon olympic no draft Barberino (Italy): 13th  M45-59 in 2:40.47

Tanja Starl, half distance Linztriathlon (Austria): 2nd W35-39 in 5:17 and this means that Tanja qualified for the European Half Distance Championship at Walchsee In Austria, as this race was the only Austrian Selection race! Well done.

Race Recap from Coach Robbie Haywood:

Chiin-Hooi Tan raced in the Haderslev Half Iron Triathlon in Denmark and it was a day to adapt and overcome. After swimming a little of course, some cramps late in the bike and severe cramping on the run, Chiin pulled out the 3rd fastest female run to finish 2nd in her category with some prize money to boot. A practice run for the next half in two weeks, and a day to blow out some cobwebs. Well done Chiin.

Finally, a race recap from one of our recent Mallorca campers, Ermanno Ciarrocchi who put in an excellent performance at the European Age Group Championships:

“Raced this morning, eventually all the training according to your plan and the turbo trainer sessions kicked in, I broke down each leg into a moderate-medium-mad block – remember in Mallorca?! – and…it just worked!

Ended up finally running decently, with a 36’47” split, for me way the best in recent years! Also the bike went very well, although I think I was an inch too conservative.”

Congratulations to all our athletes competing this weekend. online triathlon coaches are available to help improve your performance here.