Rocco Forte Hotels

Seasoned triathlete, Ironman and native Roman, Danilo Palmucci is Hotel de Russie’s much-loved Master Trainer. Having competed in over 300 races worldwide, Danilo is an expert in providing tailored training programmes and in depth fitness advice to guests. Here, he shares his triathlon story and top tips for those looking to try the sport themselves.

When did you first recognize your passion for the triathlon?

“I’ve always been very athletic, but I remember reading about the first triathlon that took place in Italy on the 16th September 1984 and thinking to myself, ‘finally they have invented my sport.’”

How do you prepare yourself for the competition?

“Like any sport, training for a triathlon requires a good deal of time and resources. The downside of this is having to sacrifice time with friends and family.”

Do you follow a specific diet?

“I choose to focus on eating healthily rather than following a strict diet. It is important to keep in mind that the body needs a certain amount of calories per day to function at its optimum. If you want to get into triathlon training, it’s a common mistake to think following a strict diet is necessary. You need plenty of nutritious, energy-packed food for stamina.”

How should a beginner prepare to take on this sport? Are there any particular training tips you’d recommend?

“The first thing I would suggest is to invest in a good trainer, who can introduce you to the sport whilst also helping you to avoid mistakes and prevent you from pushing yourself too hard. Generally, I would recommend challenging technical training in order to consistently achieve better results.”

What is the most unforgettable sporting event you’ve competed in?

“I am privileged to have had the opportunity to participate in many prestigious triathlons all over the world, including several world championships. The race that meant the most was Embrunman, which takes place in the French Alps and is regarded as the toughest Ironman race in the world. I participated 20 years ago and managed to achieve the score of my dreams and win the bronze medal. It really made everything I had sacrificed worth it.”

What kind of people are triathlon fans? Who is participates in this sport?

“Many enthusiastic fans will spend their vacations in a destination where a triathlon is taking place in order to be involved in the action and volunteer in the event. It is nice to meet these people; they become like family over time and not only generally speaking—a female fan ended up marrying my cousin and gave birth to my two nephews who are now triathletes! All types of athletes come to the triathlon—it is a very mixed community. We welcome the young and old and we treat each other with respect.  The applause for the last person across the finish line is always louder and more enthusiastic than for anyone else.”

Let Danilo put you through your paces when you stay at Hotel De Russie. To enquire, call +39 06 32 88 81 or email    

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