Founder, Director & Head Coach of BEYOND THE LINE
Olivier Baillet spent most of his 20 years of his banking career in international roles, in Frankfurt, Buenos Aires, NYC, Paris, Hong Kong and Singapore, mostly in risk management positions. All these years, he also had a ‘parallel life’ as a competitive distance athlete. In 2014, at 43, Olivier went back to school, completed a specialisation module in Sport Management part of an Executive MBA program. He launched BEYOND THE LINE while graduating.
As an athlete, Olivier is well known in the Hong Kong sports community for having completed the Ironman triathlon world championship 4 times over a span of 17 years, for climbing the equivalent of Mt Everest altitude on a bike (almost 9000m, by climbing 10 times a hill that has 900m elevation) and recently for introducing the Swedish sport of Swimrun in Hong Kong. His most notable Hong Kong achievement and the one that brought him unprecedented media coverage, was his 75km swim around Lantau island (pictured above). You can read all about it in the blog post series: 75KM ROUND LANTAU SWIM CHALLENGE
As a sports consultant, Olivier has been coaching running and swimming to an international bank’s “Staff Club” since its creation, and did several interventions as a speaker, mainly on motivation and wellness, in banks (SG, Deutsche Bank) and other industries (IKEA, gyms and clubs).
As a one-on-one personal coach, Olivier has worked with over 140 athletes and counting, all busy executives, to reach their sports objectives.
I wasn’t super athletic as a kid and had no special gift. The most I did was swimming twice a week in a club for less than 10 years, playing a bit of tennis, and riding my BMX (until I broke my collarbone big time…). I always enjoyed sports though, very much. My sports abilities only started to take shape in my mid to late twenties, when I started to venture into swim challenges, such as a 5km pool charity swim, a 7km river swim and a 24h relay pool swim. I then ventured into running, doing my first half marathon followed by a full marathon one month after, on no training, and climbing Aconcagua summit with no specific preparation. I bought my first road bike ever a bit before my 30th birthday. From there, everything changed, and it all went very quickly. I bought Joe Friel’s ‘Triathlon Training Bible’ in late 2000 and studied it all winter. I created my first training plan and started training for Ironman on Jan 1, 2001. Seven months after, I qualified for the Ironman World Championship by clocking 9h51 on my first Ironman on a notoriously unforgiving course (Lake Placid). That took most of my friends by surprise and it also exceeded my expectations. After that, I kept getting requests from athletes about my ‘secrets’. It then took me more than a decade to evolve from ‘the nice guy happy to share’ to professional coaching.
Through BEYOND THE LINE, I now pass on the knowledge I have garnered from years of self-training and self-testing to type A executives wanting to get to the next level. My training philosophy has expanded and keeps evolving, but there are constant pillars:
Polarised training intensities
Holistic training approach
Nutrition plans & stress management
Aerobic foundation build-up
All year strength training
Mix of technology & sport science with intuition
Growth mindset & curiosity
Participative coaching style
Scientific periodisation of training
My ultimate goal, beyond helping athletes reach their objectives, is to make sure that the athletes remain fit and active all their life, avoiding burnout and injury, and enjoying the process and their active lifestyle.
In my continuing search for self-improvement, I have incorporated meditation in my daily life and have accumulated a wealth of knowledge on nutrition, mind training and stress management through my own experimentations and a lot of reading. I sometimes share my unusual views on certain topics to his athletes, when I feels that there is an interest from the athlete.
Armed with my decade and a half of experience as a former international banker racing Ironman and other ultra challenges, I have developed a coaching style that perfectly fits the lifestyle constraints of the busy executives. In a nutshell: “I know what you are going through, juggling with a demanding job, a family and your endurance quest: I was just like you”.
Qualifications & Main Courses
- Triathlon Development Coach from Triathlon Australia
- NSAM Certified Personal Trainer (in progress)
- Precision Nutrition (in progress)
- Heart Rate Variability (in progress)
- MPEAK Mindfulness for Peak Performance Program
- MBSR Mindfulness – Focused Stress Reduction Program
BEYOND THE LINE
The rationale behind the name ‘BEYOND THE LINE’
Endurance athletes tend to get obsessed with the finish line. They often overlook the value of the progressive transformation undergone during the months of training, the people met along the way and the discovery of their inner self, their inner strength.
However, the journey matters as much as the result, sometimes more.
- We are here to help the athletes fully enjoy the journey to the finish line, and beyond it,
- We provide them the tools to open their horizon to new challenges,
- In the quest to optimum health and performance, we at BEYOND THE LINE enjoy incorporating new approaches and thinking out of the box.
BEYOND THE LINE’s specific coaching and consulting expertise
What makes our coaching specific is first our understanding of the challenges faced by busy executives trying to be the best they can be in their sport while juggling with obligations and demands of all sorts: just like his athletes, while in banking, Olivier had to excel at analysing situations, finding solutions, planning and delivering, just to be able to find the time to train.
Our second domain of expertise is our ability to adapt to the reality of life. As Olivier puts it:
Over 20 years, I have been through a lot: success and failure of course, injuries, work-related burnout as a result of a lot of dicey work situations, deeply disrupting health issues degenerating into mental health challenges, different parenting stages, close family dramas, moving from country to country, going from a stable banking revenue to zero when launching BEYOND THE LINE while living in the most expensive city in the World… etc. So I know that training is just one piece of the stress puzzle and that longevity in the sport requires adapting, evolving and accepting. I have my training principles that I have developed over the decades, but hearing the athletes, understanding them and finding what works best for them is what makes Beyond The Line’s coaching special and successful.
BEYOND THE LINE’s activities
BEYOND THE LINE is an endurance sports coaching and consulting company working with individuals and corporate groups
BEYOND THE LINE designs training plans that are tailor-made to their specific race, need, level, and commitment. For those opting for our Fully Customised Plans, we also provide direct comprehensive access to our Head Coach.
We cover most endurance sports: triathlon, trail running, road running, competitive cycling, open water swimming, and swimrun, We are always open to working on unusual challenges as we have the skills and expertise to design an out-of-the-box well-suited holistic solution for anything.
We also cover the topics of NUTRITION, STRENGTH TRAINING, and MINDTRAINING through specific optional modules.
Being mainly an online company, BEYOND THE LINE has no frontier. Note that Olivier has lived -and trained and raced- in three different countries in Europe, in the US, in South America, on top of two countries in Asia, which has provided him with a diversified wealth of knowledge and experience.
BEYOND THE LINE offers tailor-made holistic programmes to help employees get back into shape, be more in control of their personal life and be happier and more efficient at work as a result. Our services include talks and sport coaching sessions.
We have been providing group running classes and group swimming classes in Hong Kong for over 5 years. We have also launched an online running program specifically for corporate groups, based on the same principles as those used with our individual services.
We also provide speaking engagements tailored to the corporation’s needs. We often give motivational talks based on our ultra-endurance experience, but we can also focus on health, stress management, and more.
We are also happy to create programme that encompass both outdoor activities and speaking engagements.