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Welcome to Professional Triathlete - Tim Van Berkel - Our Latest NuroKor Ambassador

How did you get into triathlons and why do you love the sport?

I first got into triathlon when I was about 16 years old while playing AFL. I had a friend who convinced me to try it out during the off-season to keep me fit and I quickly realised that it was something I enjoyed and seemed to be good at. Over the years triathlon has not only kept me active, but also enabled me to enjoy the process of preparation for a race and witnessing gains which can be very rewarding in itself. It has taken me all over the world and brought me some incredible opportunities which I will always be grateful for.

What does your typical day look like?

A typical day in the life of Tim means waking up at 06:30 and straight to a black coffee while I do some life admin and watch the morning headlines. I then start my first session of the day – usually a swim at my local pool then it’s home for brekkie before heading out on the bike for a few hours. I finish up my day with a run; I am lucky to live along a beautiful stretch of beach path which makes it a great setting for training and I can get my family out with me in the summer afternoons.

How does your training change leading up to big competitions?

Essentially the training hours amp up to around 30 hours/week and my sleep and nutrition routine becomes stricter. If training for Ironman I will focus on endurance and longer sessions, and before a 70.3 I ensure I include more speed work to improve my ability to pick up the pace when needed on race day. The week of a race I taper my training and work heavily on nutrition to give myself the best fuel for the day.

What is your proudest moment?

I’d say winning the Asia Pacific Championship in Cairns 2016. This was because I really did not think I would ever come back to win the race when I came off the bike 14 minutes down from the lead. On a good day my run is my strong leg, and by 18km I had taken the lead. It was the best feeling to cross the finish line knowing that I had really achieved such a milestone in my career

If you weren’t an athlete what would you be?

In all honesty I would probably be a tradie; but if we are talking about a dream job then I would be a famous international DJ.

What injuries have you had and how did they affect you?

Apart from the obvious small strains here and there, in 2007 I got a stress fracture in my left hip and had to be out of training and racing for around 8 months. It was a long road back, and it still causes me grief with a lot of tightness and pain at times. Despite chiro and strength training, I think my alignment has always been out since then.

How does Nurokor help you manage performance, pain and recovery?

I particularly like that Nurokor has so many different settings and intensity levels because I can adjust this to my needs each time I use it. I have so far used it for both recovery and pain management and am looking forward to trying it in the gym for muscle performance. By assisting in healing post injury, I have found that it prevents the use of pain medications or strapping and lets me get straight back into training. I think being an athlete is a unique lifestyle; it is not just a ‘job’ and the Nurokor device fits easily into this lifestyle.

Where and when do you use the device?

I like the ability of Nurokor to provide me with recovery support in my own home and on my schedule. I usually use it at the end of the day when I am winding down and it has become part of my routine now when we settle in after dinner. My son even gets involved and helps put the electrode pads on! So far I have mainly used it on my glutes and legs as this is where I find I experience strain and tightness.

What is next for you and your next goal?

Covid-19 has obviously impacted everyone around the world, and for athletes that has meant no international travel and barely any racing. I feel like I am in great form both physically and mentally and am not giving up on the dream. I would love to get back to Hawaii to compete in the Ironman World Championships, and ultimately would love to beat my best result there of 7th.

You can follow Tim’s journey here via Instagram