My many hats

As the season ends and fall rolls into Calgary, there is a shift in the air for me. The training has become less focused on intensity and more focused on aerobic base and general fitness. For the first time in months, I’m not obsessing about my weight and watching everything meticulously that enters my mouth. Finally I have some time to catch up with friends and family and don’t have to leave at 8:30pm for bed. Yes, the training and racing aspect has calmed down, even if it is just for a few weeks.

However, this doesn’t mean I’m not busy. No, this is the time of year where I wish I went to business school and took marketing.  This, is sponsorship season. As a professional athlete, I have many jobs. There is the obvious one of making sure my body is in immaculate condition and that I perform at my highest level on race day. I also coach several athletes and run multiple programs out of the Talisman Centre to support myself and to give back to the triathlon community. Not to mention I enjoy it! My other jobs include finding funds to support this job as well as marketing myself to maintain my influence in the sport. Finding  sponsorships is a long, arduous, enjoyable, frustration and rewarding experience. You have some companies that you interact with for months and they never call you back or answer phone call, just stop talking to you or string you along and then drop you or don’t come trough on promises. The, you have other companies where you just click. Some of my good friends were introduced to me in a sponsorship setting and I’m eternally grateful for those people.

So, what does this involve? Well, there is the sending out of resume’s, constant contact and phone calls, investigating companies and making connections. I am quite picky on who I deal with and only work with companies I truly believe I can form a mutually beneficial relationship with. In the past couple years I have grown a fondness for business and do enjoy certain aspects of this challenge. I have been so blessed to have so many mentors around me. People who have guided me on my path and provided me with more world knowledge that I ever got from U of C. To those dear friends of mine, I say thank you.

No one teaches you how to get sponsors. Over the past 10 years, I have made many mistakes, learned a lot and progressed as an athlete, business man and person. I have a dream, and that dream requires adequate funding to fulfil. My reality is that every day I wake up in the morning and want nothing more than to train to be the best triathlete in the world. Following  this passion has been rewarding so far and will hopefully continue for many more years to come. I can’t think of any better job than following my passion.

Grant Burwash & Hillary Higgins Ironman Calgary 70.3

Grant Burwash & Hillary Higgins Ironman Calgary 70.3



Introducing Tri-It

This year I am very excited to announce a new partnership with Tri-It Multisport. Rose, Richelle, Brian and the whole team at Tri-It have a passion for triathlon that takes them to a whole new level of customer service. Their bright, well stocked store has many of your triathlon needs from wetsuits, swimsuits, training and racing apparel, and nutrition, to the latest gadgets to improve performance. Recently, they just launched an online store that will ship directly to your doorstep.

For the past half a dozen years, Tri-It has been heavily involved in the community. Together, we share a passion for growing the sport of triathlon in Canada and bringing the sport to all ages and abilities. Tri-it supports many clubs and races around the Calgary area and strives to make everyone feel welcome in this great sport of triathlon. I’m very excited about this partnership because I our values and philosophies match well. As their half ironman athlete, I will represent them at all my competitions this year as well as work with them on many local projects to bring information to those who seek it. Tri-It will be supporting me this year to help me achieve success as I aim to compete in the Ironman 70.3 World Championships in September.

Thank you to Tri-It for bringing me on to your team, and I look forward to embarking on a journey together.

Tri it


Win at Banff International Triathlon

This past weekend I raced the Subaru Banff International Triathlon. What a perfect day for racing. The weather was clear, sunny and a high in the mid 20’s. I was using this race as a final tune up before I head down south for several 70.3’s this fall. The day started out with a swim in the 14C Two Jack Lake. I was actually quite happy that my hands and feet went numb in my warm up swim so that I didn’t feel like I was cooling down during the rest of the race. I knew my main competition would come from Ironman UK champion, Scott Nyedli. About 500m into the swim I found myself at the front of the race with Scott on my heels. I decided to put in a couple surges to drop him, but he responded to each on. When I realized I wasn’t going to crack him, I settled into a relaxed rhythm and came out of the water first, with Scott on my heels.

The run to the first transition was up a hill and my breathing got out of control and I felt really off. I quickly tried to calm down once I was on the bike and focus on the next task at hand. Scott passed me 6km into the bike, at which point I decided to just follow behind him and let him set the pace. We played cat and mouse on the bike, exchanging leads several times before he lead me into T2 by a few seconds. My game plan was now to put in a surge for the first 2km of the run and see what kind of damage I could do to Scott. After the first km, I had put probably 150m on him and settled into a tempo run. Throughout the day I was having stomach issues and probably threw up half a dozen times, so I didn’t want to have to put in any significant surges on the run. As I rolled through the run, I thought about the next two weeks of racing and tried to hold a steady pace. I was quite happy in the end with my run split of 33:19 and overjoyed to get my third win of the season.

One of the highlights of the day was having Hillary and my family there to watch. Because of my travel schedule, it’s not very often that my family and friends get to see me race, so this was a treat. I would also like to give a special thanks to Centaur Subaru, Speed Theory and PowerBar, who were all on site helping me this weekend.

Full results are posted here

Next up, Ironman Cancun 70.3 on Sunday.

Here are some pics from Kelowna

Grant Burwash Kelowna triathlon

Grant having a pre race chat with Holy and Hillary. Racing with support is great!

Grant Burwash Kelowna triathlon

Grant Burwash Kelowna triathlon

Grant Burwash Kelowna triathlon

Grant Burwash Kelowna triathlon


blueseventy Sponsorship

I am pleased to announce that this year I will be training and racing in blueseventy wetsuits. This year I will be swimming in the totally revamped helix suit. The blueseventy Helix is known for it’s flexibility and it’s great feel in the water. Blueseventy will introduce a new wetsuit to their lineup this year, the Axis, which is for weaker swimmers who are looking for added buoyancy. Along with wetsuits, blueseventy has a full line up of swimskins, goggles, neoprene hats and accessories.

Thank you to everyone at blueseventy and I look forward to working with your products this year.


Are you TEST material?

TEST Yourself!

Do you have what it takes to be on Team Elite Speed Theory?


Speed Theory is looking for high performance triathletes for the 2010 Team Elite Speed Theory (TEST).  We are looking for energetic, personable, knowledgeable and successful athletes. Speed Theory will provide products for the selected athletes to use in training and racing as well as supplying deals on anything else the athlete may need. Ideal TEST athletes must have been racing for at least two years and must be placing top 5 in their age group, or competing at a provincial or national elite level. Athletes will be expected to know about and promote the products they are given. Although performance is important to the selection criteria; we are also looking for originality in each athletes approach to grow Speed Theory within the community. To apply please email a cover letter of no more than 300 words and your athletic resume to no later than November 13th.

We look forward to hearing from you!


The Speed Theory Team