When Life Throws Brian Too Many Lemons!

Brian was born in Salem, Massachusetts in 1973.  After living in the United States for 5 years, his parents decided to move to South Australia indefinitely.  From an early age, Brian demonstrated talents in sports such as swimming, surf life-saving, triathlon, and road cycling. He defines himself as an academically average student, yet he excelled in all areas of sports.   He remembers his childhood as a challenging time because he was constantly bullied for being tall and skinny.


After completing High School, he decided to leave home and moved to the Gold Coast to pursue his dream as a Surf Ironman competitor.  He lived in Surfers Paradise for six months before moving again to the Sunshine Coast and continued training with his coach.  Brian raced successfully for 4 years and when he reached what he calls a “personal plateau”, he decided that a change of direction in life was needed.  He moved abruptly to Sydney to continue his training as a Surf Ironman until he was diagnosed with chronic fatigue which forced him to stop all forms of sports in an attempt to rehabilitate his broken body.  After being assisted by specialists for a period, he started getting more in touch with his body and developed a successful self-recovery regime that shortly led him to training and competing in triathlon.

In 1998, he decided to quit everything and boarded a plane to Denver, USA to join the “Mecca” of triathlon. He trained and raced with some of the best tri-athletes of the world for 12 months but returned to Australia after his body gave up again, and sunk into another difficult phase of depression that ended with the decision to commit to professional cycling. In 2003, he experienced a frightening episode of heart issues and underwent surgery, but more determined than ever, Brian achieved 4th place in the Australian Time Trial Championship! This event awarded him a professional contract in America where he returned later that year. In 2006, after a very frustrating season and his first broken marriage, Brian was in total shock when he was diagnosed with second stage testicular cancer. Yet, his determination took over his condition, he returned to cycling training after successful chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment. But life kept on giving him lemons, in 2007, another drama struck, Brian was badly injured in a terrible cycling race accident involving a car, which left him with a broken femur, broken pelvis, multiple vertebrae fractures and a destroyed knee. During this forced inactive period, Brian started his own online coaching services but with the lack of physical exercises, he gained a massive weight of 50kg!

In 2010, he returned to Australia to help look after his dying father and commenced a new career as a swimming coach on the Gold Coast. He met Andrea, coach of the Australian Paralympics team who soon became his wife and the mother of his daughter. Today, Brian is one of the four distributors of the very successful brand Cocowhip, and still very much in touch with the sporting area although not training much.

Brian will be joining WLSA patient’s Live The Dream dinner on 15th July 2016 6pm at BSKT café, to inspire us all to keep that fighting spirit, no matter what our circumstances are, it is up to us to make a permanent change in life!