Jordan Bryden joins Trisutto squad
Calgary’s Jordan Bryden enjoyed his first Ironman 70.3 podium in Korea with a second-place finish. Jordan started working with Brett Sutton’s squad this year. We caught up with him to find out about training with the high-profile coach and some of the other changes in Bryden’s busy life.
Congratulations on your second place at Ironman 70.3 Korea.
Korea was a great opportunity for me to take some of the work I have been doing since July and transfer that into a fairly strong performance. I have been working with Robbie Haywood and Brett Sutton over the past few months and train with athletes like Daniela Ryf every day. When you are with a group that challenges each other, it makes rising to the occasion much easier on race day. During the race, I definitely tried to stay smart and race tactically, and pushed the pace early on in the run to create a gap that allowed me to watch the rest of the field.
When did you start training with Sutton? Why the change, and what’s so different about training under him? Did this require you to move away from Calgary to train and make other sacrifices?
Having the ITU Grand Finale in Edmonton last year was a big motivator for me to start racing at a higher level again. I left ITU racing in 2012, and was a photographer for Triathlon Magazine Canada at the event. It really got me refocused and I started a long-term plan to try and race at a high level again. With Brett’s history of helping other six-foot-plus tall guys like Matty Reed, Craig Walton and Reto Hug, it seemed like the best place to go. I worked to find a way to pay some of the financial burden, and was also supported by some close friends to start working with one of Brett’s assistant coaches, Robbie Haywood, for a couple months before joining the squad in St. Moritz. Things went well there and I rejoined the team in Jeju, Korea for another month in September as Mary Beth Ellis, Matty Trautman and Daniela Ryf prepared for Kona. Brett and his supporting coaches work to create the most ideal situation for each athlete on the team and it’s different for everyone. At this point I am living in Calgary and joining them for longer training camps a few times a year.
Did you have any of those epic training stories that we all hear about?
Brett will work you hard and push you to new limits, but only when you are ready for it. There have been 40 km run days and swim sets that last for hours, but I have never felt like I am at risk of injury. There are some long days at camp, but the epic days to me are not the six- or seven-hour training days. Everyone does hard days, but most don’t do the work that supports those days. I train in Calgary the rest of the year and see some age group athletes just punish themselves for a couple weeks before an Ironman, and can’t understand why they get sick before the race, or wind up with injuries. The epic part is having the ability to stay focused and get solid workouts done when no one is watching. It’s awesome to watch an athlete like Matty Trautman, who hits workout after workout without a care as to if it is fun or exciting. Just pure work ethic.
Obviously things are working. What was the recipe for success for you?
I think I can connect with both Brett and Robbie’s personalities better than I have with other coaches I’ve worked with in the sport. Both really care about their athlete’s success nearly as much as the athletes themselves. Having said that, I don’t think I can consider myself successful yet. Success, to me, would be trusting the plan completely for 12 months with the same attention to detail I see in Daniela Ryf.