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“I’m modest and quiet; I’m definitely no braggart”

“I’m modest and quiet; I’m definitely no braggart”

Photographer:Fotograaf: Joey Roberts

The seven sins of triathlete Jardy van den Heuvel
  • Greed. I have a shoe tic: I have twelve pairs of running shoes, three pairs of cycling shoes and another ten or so pairs of ‘normal’ shoes. Obviously you can only wear one pair at a time, but I change them depending on the type of training I’m doing: I have shoes for endurance running, shoes for speed training, race shoes. They’re not hugely conspicuous, and they don’t need to be. I’m modest and quiet; I’m definitely no braggart. If I put myself in the spotlight it’s a conscious choice. When it comes to racing I’m less modest; then I – how shall I put it (laughs) – couldn’t give a shit about others.
  • Gluttony. I’m very aware of what I eat; I live healthily, even if I allow myself a few biscuits or chips on the weekend. It’s hard when I see all these Christmas sweets in the shops. But I restrain myself. They’re not nutritious. I don’t drink either. Smoking? No, that doesn’t mix well with sports.
  • Lust. They say sex before a race is not a good idea, but I’ve never tested that theory. I don’t believe in it either; my training sessions have always gone fine the next day. Do I get a lot of attention from the ladies? Maybe, but I don’t really notice it.
  • Envy. I’m jealous of different things. One: of people who have the money to be able to live purely for their sport. Two: of top athletes at US universities. They get all the facilities they need from their university. Sport is number one there, and studying is organised around it. Three: when I’m injured or things aren’t going well, I’m jealous of normal students who have all the time in the world, who don’t have so much on their minds and can just go out and enjoy themselves.
  • Sloth. After a training session I just want to lie on the couch and forget everything for a bit. And I often put off my homework, write reports at the very last minute. It’s a pity really.
  • Wrath. I don’t really recognise this. I do get mad at myself after a poor performance, and I get annoyed by fellow students who don’t pull their weight when we’re doing group work. Then I can be quite snappy. But wrath is too big a word.
  • Pride. I know I need to work hard, both for triathlon and for my studies. I’m not a huge talent. I don’t get the highest marks; it doesn’t come naturally to me. Last summer I was feeling so confident about the swimming part – I’m originally a swimmer – that I did it at half strength. I found myself so far behind that I couldn’t catch up on the cycling and running legs. That brought me back down to earth. From now on it’s full steam ahead from the word go.

Jardy van den Heuvel, 22, third-year student of Human Movement Sciences, born in Waalwijk, lives in Sittard

Trains 20 to 25 hours per week, member of Kijani, a triathlon team in the eredivisie; coached by Edo van der Meer. Training for the World Cup for students in Sweden in September 2018 and the under 23s European Championships in Israel in October 2018

Best performance to date: top 20 in the Europacups 2016 and 2017

Sponsored by 361 (shoes), Maurten (sports nutrition) and Kijani (clothes)



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