Jose and Isobel Uribe

Jose and Isobel Uribe

What’s better than capping off your first experience with an 80/20 training plan with a 7th-place age-group finish in your first Ironman 70.3? Doing it with your soulmate, that’s what!

If you study the results of this year’s Ironman 70.3 New Zealand, you will see that the 7th-place finisher in the women’s 35-39 age-group was Isobel Uribe, and that the 7th-place finisher in the men’s 35-39 age group was Jose Uribe. Coincidence? Brother and sister? Nope: Wife and husband!

Originally from Medellin, Colombia, the triathlon power couple now live and train together in Warkworth, New Zealand, where Isobel works as quality engineer and José as a bike mechanic and marketing and advertising manager. Both are veteran endurance athletes, but only recently did José succeed in persuading his wife to overcome her fear of open-water swimming and give triathlon a try. It was José, as well, who convinced Isobel to test out the 80/20 method, and although they started with an off-season maintenance plan and low expectations, they were pleasantly surprised.

“The first training sessions felt easy and we were fresh all the time,” Isobel says. “Then the numbers started to improve and that fatigue we had become accustomed to all those years was not there.” When the coronavirus situation improved in New Zealand and the races returned, the Uribes switched to an Olympic-distance plan and had a successful 2020 season that inspired them to make the leap to the 70.3 distance, where further pleasant surprises awaited. “We enjoyed every session of the training because we were never too tired,” Jose says. “Then the race came and we loved every minute, felt strong, finished smiling and planning for the next race!”

By the way, Isobel and Jose call themselves “WE Team,” which we think is just the cutest thing ever.