Andrey Pereira: first triathlon – and lifetime lessons

Written on October 19, 2017 by Campus Life in IE Stories

Andrey Pereira
International MBA January 2017 intake
President, IE Finance and Capital Markets Club
From: Refice, Brazil

MBA is becoming special for the reasons you never believe it would. Sure, knowledge is important, contacts, diversity, exposure, etc. but what about the little other things?

I am not an athlete precisely, especially with so much cañas y tapas this year. Gym was part of the routine but had never participated in a Triathlon competition. The dream about finishing one seemed quite distant.

This year is about to experiment – appealing to the cliché – getting out of your comfort zone. So, meet Andrey: one of those obstinate people that when decide to commit to something, go all in. It was like that when parallel to the MBA I decided to take the CFA 1 (approved :)), or when instead of traveling I decided to spend the summer in London trading financial assets (which is not particularly fun when you check all your friend’s fb pictures in the Mediterranean Sea…), or when I joined and was elected President of IE Finance & Capital Markets Club, or even when I decided to participate in the Santander Barcelona Olympic Triathlon (1.5km open waters swimming, 40km pedaling, 10km running), which took place last Sunday 06/10.

First things first, if you know you are not good at something, try to contact those who are good at it.  I reached out to Imad Khochman and Christian Santa Cruz, two IRONMAN finishers with lots of experiences to get on board on this venture.  First lifetime lesson: If you believe you can do something, you are already 50% there, but you always need inspiration and support from REAL people. You can become as good as the people you associate with. Choose wisely who you want to partner up for your projects in life and use admiration as the main criteria for selecting the people. Thank you, Imad and Christian!

Second lifetime lesson: Preparation! I learned that good things always take time to happen (which is a harsh reality for millennials.). Putting together time to exercise required some sacrifices in other areas. Spending a summer in London was not that fun but I found an open water swimming spot in the city and went there three times a week. Without this experience in open waters I would had never completed the race.

Third lifetime lesson: learn to celebrate small accomplishments. Swimming 1.5km in semi-cold open waters ultimately everybody can do it (trust me, I’m not a great swimmer), it’s not a milestone to put on your CV either, but learning to celebrate small accomplishment like this will give the joy and motivation to go for the big accomplishments.

On Saturday (one day before the race) we drove to Barcelona early morning and the worst thing that could happen, happened. Food poisoning. What a bummer! 3 months dedicating 12 hours of exercise per week for nothing… spent all Saturday in bed at the Hotel with only coconut water. Felt weak, frustrated and frankly, pathetic.

Sunday morning arrived and against all common sense and body conditions I decided to race anyway. Fourth lifetime lesson: If you come so far, don’t walk away.

At the end my overall time was far behind from what I was aiming for. Running was a nightmare. Can’t say I had joy during the race because I didn’t, but the final lesson here, certain sufferings are worth if you can visualize the big picture. Like the one I was staring at in the photo on the right: the finishing line 🙂

Bio: Andrey was born in Recife, north east coast of Brazil. Has lived in 5 countries and developed his career in the Banking industry in Latin America. When not studying/working he enjoys music, reading, outdoors, dancing latin rhythms and his church activities on weekends.


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