Today we interview Marion Tuin, an extraordinary triathlete and competitor in one of the toughest sports in the world. This 35-year-old Dutch triathlete and dentist is a woman who loves her sport and transmits all her enthusiasm in spite of the intense physical and mental demands it places on her.
She tells us about how she has had to adapt her training over recent months, her future plans and her passion for Mallorca.
Tell us Marion, what’s life been like for you over recent months?
I'm fine! In addition to being a professional triathlete, I’m also a dentist, and both things suddenly dried up at the same time, so I’ve had a lot more time for myself. I've done a lot of things both inside and outside the house, like discovering new cycling routes and really growing to appreciate some of the wonderful places closer to home which I had not really noticed much before. It’s given me more time to look around me and take everything in. I’m really grateful for that.
Over the last few days we’ve also been able to train in the pool again, complying with all the new precautions. I’m pleasantly surprised that after two months of not being able to swim at all, I’ve got my rhythm back quite quickly. An added bonus!
What has your daily routine been like to stay in shape?
When the pools closed, I had a hard time adapting. I wasn’t eating very well and I was getting out of bed much later. I missed my morning swimming sessions so much!
But, after the first week, I adapted physically and mentally and started to build up a more solid foundation for when the competition starts up again. I’ve done more than 500 km on the bike and also run a lot of kilometres. The most important thing is that I have had more time to do some more functional training, which I already feel is starting to pay off. I also spent more time stretching and foam rolling.
You won IM70.3 Mallorca in 2018, what memories do you have of the competition?
Great memories of course! It was my first competition that year. The weather was fantastic and the scenery you see on the bike is the most beautiful I have ever seen in any competition. I loved all the hairpin bends after the big climb. I have quite good control over the bike, so I love racing downhill at top speed, which made it a bit easier for me to take the lead. The route for the run is excellent, there’s plenty of space for people to see you and cheer you on, and that's really great.
You’ll be taking part in Mallorca 140.6, now scheduled for 2021. What advice would you give to participants who don’t know the island?
That’s right! I like the fact that the organisers care just as much about amateurs as they do about professional athletes. They also really understand all about "giving the race back to the athletes" and the cost of taking part is also very reasonable.
If you don't know the island, I would recommend you familiarise yourself with at least a few of its bike climbs. For beginners or athletes who are just in it to take part, I would recommend trying a few climbs just to get used to the feeling of the ascents and the speed of the descents. The swimming leg tends to be in calm waters, but you should practice your open-water skills, like getting used to sighting, for example.
As a professional triathlete, what do you like best about our hotels?
I love the gym as it’s really well equipped and has plenty of room to work out. I like to have space so I can work out more freely.
And, of course, the food! It was a big temptation before the race given that professional athletes tend to have a very basic diet. But I couldn't resist and after the races I tried almost all the desserts. What a pleasure!
And finally, what is your favourite place or activity in Mallorca?
Eating a paella in the historic centre of Alcudia. It was the best paella ever! Both the food and the scenery are breathtaking.
I also love cycling around the island. Although Mallorca is a really popular destination for cyclists in the high season, the local people are still incredibly polite. I have always felt really safe riding my bike around Mallorca, so that’s something I would recommend to everyone.