Guts, Grit, & Grace
Team GOTTA takes on the world of triathlon
One is a lawyer, another’s a journalist. There’s an entrepreneur, a model, a Frenchman, and a coach. Together, they certainly make a wild and wily bunch, making fun of each other as they push the limits of strength, speed, and endurance. We’re talking about Team GOTTA, of course, and the fact that they’re together certainly says a lot about how sports transcends all kinds of borders.
Kim Atienza, Isabelle Daza, Erwan Heussaff, Gilbert Remulla, Atty. Mark Gorriceta, Mark Hernandez, Raymond Racaza, Sidney Maderazo, Adrien Semblat and Kevin Fule: This is Team GOTTA.
It started with Atienza, Gorriceta, Remulla and Heussaff training for the 2012 Subic Internation Triathlon (SubiT) under the wings of Bike & Run Coach Miguel Lopez. Soon after, Hernandez and Fule joined the team. Remulla recalls, “By this time, we all had signed up for the 2012 Ironman 70.3 in Cebu which solidified our bond as a team and deepened our commitment to triathlon.”
Daza and Semblat signed on after seeing all the exciting developments in the triathlon scene. Racaza may be one of the last athletes to join the team, but he has certainly made heads turn with his impressive performance after only one year in the sport. Maderazo, the latest member, will be joining the team’s activities and races starting next season.
On most days, these athletes are together, sweating out rain or shine. Mondays are for rest and recovery or light bike spins, Tuesdays for tempo runs, and Wednesdays for tempo or interval bike workouts. On Thursdays, they go on interval runs. While Kuya Kim does his long bike on Fridays, the rest of the team goes swimming. Saturdays are for long bikes and Sundays, long runs.
As part of their training regimen too, the members take Quantum Plus everyday. Specially developed to sustain an active lifestyle, Quantum Plus contains an optimum combination of vitamins and minerals, including Chlorella, Taurine, L-Lysine, and Sodium Ascorbate, to help boost muscle recovery, mental alertness, bone health, and immunity. Quantum Plus helps Team GOTTA members prepare their mind and body for the rigors of training and competition.
Remulla says, “As a race draws closer, twice a day workouts are injected into the schedule. Each member has his own recovery strategy but common are myotherapy, ITB massage therapy, and sports stretching.”
Balancing such a demanding training regimen with their work and personal lives isn’t an issue with Team GOTTA. As Remulla says, “Each member of Team Gotta has his own set of priorities. Family first, work second, triathlon or sports comes third. The team members are lucky to have entered the sport established in their respective fields of endeavour and each one brings a colorful palette of experiences, advice, and stories.”
Kim is the group’s spiritual rock and inspiration who is great at weaving stories. Mark H. surprises everyone with his encyclopedic knowledge of triathlon and his occasional stints as a model. Erwan keeps it real, calling a spade a spade. He also likes reminding everyone that he is the youngest in the team. Gilbert encourages his teammates to pursue triathlon yet constantly tempts them to break their diet and drink alcohol.
Kevin is the team’s constant hope for landing a podium finish. Isabelle brings unwanted male attention to the team. Adrien doesn’t train too often, but still manages to beat everyone else’s time. Raymond is a phenomenon, and Atty. Mark, who’s the team captain, is the unwavering spirit who keeps the team together.
As some members are married, they make sure to prioritize which races to join so as not to put more pressure into their already full schedules. Remulla adds, “Also, our constant mantra among the married male members is “A happy wife is a happy life”. We make sure our wives, partners and/or children are part of the plans of our races and we are thankful for their support.”
At the moment, Team GOTTA is preparing for the 25km New Balance Power Run scheduled on the first week of November. Some will be participating in the Ironman Melbourne on March 2015 and the Marathon Du Medoc in France on September 2015.
Remulla ends, “We are all proud of each other for all the races we join and finish. It is a testament to our resolve to stay fit and serve, in any capacity, as an inspiration for age groupers everywhere. We want to show that it is never too late or too difficult to start triathlon and take care of your mind and body.”
MEET TEAM GOTTA
Kim Atienza: More popularly known as Kuya Kim, Atienza is a TV weatherman, variety show host, and presenter in an award winning educational program.
Isabelle Daza: Model, actress, and noontime variety show host
Erwan Heussaff: Foodie, restaurateur, and mixologist
Gilbert Remulla: A former member of the Philippine Congress, Remulla now runs businesses in property development and hotel and restaurant management.
Atty Mark Gorriceta: A corporate and tax lawyer with businesses in food and retail.
Raymond Racaza: Founder and Chief Operating Officer of a leading telecom content and services company. Founder of run.ph. Racaza is also an ultramarathoner and Ironman finisher.
Mark Hernandez: An executive in one of the country’s biggest business process outsourcing companies, Hernandez is also an ultramarathoner.
Kevin Fule: A fitness and conditioning trainer and swim coach, and a top contender in the 25 to 29 age group in Philippine triathlon
Adrien Semblat: A runner and triathlete, Semblat works for Adidas Philippines and plays in the United Football League Philippines.
Sidney Maderazo: A TV commercial director, and top age group triathlete, Maderazo qualified in the 2015 Ironman 70.3 World Championship in Austria. He’s the newest member of the team.