First ever triathlon (or how to check your ego)

Trying to change it up a bit and take a break from pounding pavement for 26.2 miles, it was decided to give it a go at a triathlon.  Now, while I can run until the cows come home, I can’t swim very well.  Actually, I’m like a fish… out of water… in the water.  That’s right, I flounder about never really sinking, never really moving forward, and never really doing anything in particular.  Oh, there’s a stroke and a kick here and there, but not sure if they are ever synchronized in any way.  Needless to say, this was going to be awesome!

The event picked was the Findley Lake Triathlon, consisting of an easy 400 meter swim, followed by a brisk 14.3 mile bike ride, and topped off with a swift 5k trail run.  I own a pair of Speedos, a bike, and some shoes, I was set.

Race Day

It is customary to be nervous on the day of a big event and I’m one to just need some quiet before an event to really harness my inner D.  However, for this event there was no inner D, the night before I had slept about 2 hours.  As I tossed and turned pondering what would happen if I drowned, I made a decision; the only way I was going to get out of that lake was either hauled out by a life guard or via the finish line.  Prayers were requested.

There were a total of 74 participants (this number is crucial) for this event, with probably 50 men and 30 women.  The swim was to start at 8 AM with the men and around 5-10 minutes later with the women.  It was an in-water start, which I enjoyed, with all of us lined up ready to start about 20 yards from the lake shore.  As the gun goes off, I hold on to the starting line and wait for the stronger swimmers to go out.  My strategy being that I would try to make a not too shallow parabola around the half way point, this would cause me to swim a bit more, but would also allow me the most flexibility if I were to stray too far or too close from the course.

I began my swim feeling pretty good and confident this would be over sooner than expected.  I began with a good steady free style stroke just to try and get as far along the course as possible while I was still fresh.  In my mind I’m sure I’m a quarter of the way there and it’s time to take a bit of a break.  I look up and notice I’m barely 10 meters in… yes, in what felt like ages and a great stroke, I advanced a mere 10 meters.  I switch it up a bit and go with a breast stroke to get some good breaths.  I look back and about 5 meters behind me there’s another male doing, what seemed to be, the doggie paddle.  I looked over a few more times and he seemed to be dedicated to this stroke and seemed intend on going the whole way using this stroke, I was not going to be passed by the doggie paddler.

I get to the half way point and the doggie paddler has made a wide turn around the bend, but is pretty much neck and neck with me.  At this time the first two women swimmers catch up and even stopped for a second to figure out which way to go around me.  They were the strong swimmers and I was the flounderer, they were going to need to go around me and did.  At this point I look to my left and see the doggie paddler getting ahead of me and realized this was going worst than expected.  However, hope was not lost.  I had made it to the half way point and knew that if there was a current it should take me to the shore.  I also knew that if there was a current in a lake, it would take days for me to wash up, so it was up to me to get to the finish line before the day’s end.  I begin a combination of doggie paddle and back strokes to ensure I keep my head above water as much as possible.  I’m sucking wind like it’s going out of style and my chest feels like it weights a thousand pounds.  I try to ignore the multitude of women passing me by and try to focus on what’s ahead, solid ground.

I take a break to try and get my bearings and realize that I’m about 15 meters away, this is it.  I will not be hauled away by a life guard.  I began a mad back stroke dash.  I bumped the finish line with my head and try to reach for the bottom of the lake.  I’m about chest deep in water and I begin to walk my way out of the water.  The smart thing to have done is to swim until you’re only tight deep in water and run the rest of the way, but I was so exhausted and so eager to use my legs that I didn’t care about one more stroke.  At this point I don’t notice anyone else in the water ahead of me and don’t dare look behind me to see if I’m last.  My objective was ahead and that’s all that mattered.

I get out of the water and get hosed down to clean up some of the grime from the lake.  Put on some shorts over my speedos and slide on some shoes and walk out of the transition 1 area with the bike next to me.  At this point I’m thinking I will make up some of the lost ground on the bike and on the run.  As I get on the open road I spot the first other person ahead of me.  I can tell it’s a female biker and she doesn’t seem to be going too fast.  In my mind I think, “first victim, here we go.”  I never caught up to her.  Actually, I was passed by 3 other people and lost sight of my first “victim”.  About half way through the bike ride I catch up to a 13 year old boy on a non-road bike; given it his all.  I told him good job as I passed him and thought to myself that kid will beat me in a year or two.

I finish the bike portion and switch shoes and get to running.  Here’s my bread and butter.  I had hoped for a decently flat course and wasn’t sure what to expect on this trail run.  I should have known better.  The trail run consisted of muddy areas, some very steep valleys and climbs and a lot of roots.  It was slow moving, painful descents due to bad knees, and a couple of twisted ankles.  I saw two other runners and was pretty sure I would cross the finish line and everyone would be gone.



——- 1/4M Swim ——-


——- 16M Bike ——-


——- 5K Run ——-





Bib No

















David Macias

















Yes, that’s second to the last place in the swim, with a staggering pace of 71 minutes per mile.  I improved to 61st place in the bike stage and 33rd place in the run with an overall place of 59th.


I will do another triathlon.  I will do another one and not be second to the last in the swim.  I will also get a swim coach to improve my atrocious so-called-stroke.  It was an absolutely great experience.  It’s amazing the level of athleticism a lot of these participants display and while I might never get there competing along side makes me feel good.  It’s incredible how fit these people are, specially when you compare them to marathon runners.  It’s a whole different breed of people.


The 2010 Columbus Marathon Experience

This past weekend I ran the 2010 Columbus Marathon.  It was my 2nd marathon ever and while I felt a little more comfortable while running, it was still a grueling task.  Like usual, I really only trained during the weekends and had very little mid week runs.  So, like anything else, you get out what you put in.  One of the main reasons for running this race is the fact that it’s supposed to be a very “friendly” course (e.g. fairly flat and fast).  While I did improve my time by around 15 minutes, my dream of breaking 4 hours will have to be postponed for another race.

A couple of notes about the event itself.  First, the goody bag really didn’t have any goodies.  The Pittsburgh and Akron races had some cool stuff like free food samples, socks, etc.  While Columbus didn’t really have much besides the shirt.  Second, the shirt is nice, but I heard a lot of females complain about the color choices.  All black for both male and female marathoners; pink and blue for female and male half marathoners respectively.  Third, the bands along the way were a great experience.  There drum lines, rock bands, even a guy who played the keyboards while riding his bike… that is talent!  Finally, I felt that the overall runners were not as friendly as in my first marathon, Akron.  Perhaps, it was the fact that a marathon wasn’t new to me.  However, I have a feeling that since the Akron course is so brutal, it forms a much stronger bond among the runners or in other words, misery loves company.  Either way I was full of pithy comments for any runner so unlucky to be around me as I tried to be funny.

Finally, this race did provide some interesting analytics, which I’ve posted below.  It is nice to see a breakdown of your progress, but it is also pretty sad to see how bad my second half was when compared to my first half.

My overtime and splits:










From the start to the 10K mark, I’m kicking ass and taking names.  All 482 of them:


I am still feeling pretty good and looking forward to the 2nd half as it’s the easy half:


Someone lied to me, this half was not easy:


I am struggling, knees feel like Jell-O, legs feel like Swiss cheese, and I want my mommy:


Would I do it again?  More than likely, as I think I have a shot of breaking 4 hours on this course.


May 2nd 2010 Pittsburgh Half Marathon

In my never ending attempt to punish my body and hate my knees I’ve been training to what I hope will amount to another full marathon this year.  Along the way I figured it would be a good idea to give a half marathon another shot.  If you’ve never been to Pittsburgh, I recommend you do, it’s called the city of bridges for a reason and running through its neighborhoods and streets is a very unique experience.

The morning of the race, we arrived with a little under 30 minutes to spare, which was not good.  I really didn’t get a good warm up run in and stretched out just a bit.  It was a cloudy day with chance of thunderstorms.  Which was an issues, since the race could get called off if there was lighting… the chances of getting hit by lighting are incredibly small, but I digress.

The race began promptly at 7:30 AM, but since I was so far back in the pack I didn’t cross the starting line until about 10 minutes after the gun went off.  The first couple of miles are always torture.  It’s really a free for all, you never hit your stride as you’re on the lookout for all other runners, ensuring you don’t step on someone or someone doesn’t elbow you as they are trying to squeeze by you.  At bout mile 5 is when the seas start to part and you really get to focus on what you came here to do.  The unfortunate part is that you hit the half way point before you know it.  For me this is the hardest part as I always feel that I’ve spent too much energy trying to make it through the pack that I start to run out of gas around mile 9.  Oh well, that’s what training is there for, right?  At the end of the day it was a great day for a race even though the rain was coming down pretty hard.  Final time below.



My only complaints about this event are the lack of Goo.  All they had for the runners was water and Gatorade, glad I packed some beans, but I was banking on some Goo to break up the monotony.  Second, I didn’t see any post race beer, not saying this is imperative, but I love me a beer or three after pounding out a 13 miler.  And finally, I should have used more lube.  Yes, my armpits were red and tender and it had everything to do with the huge amounts of water that came down on me while running.


2009 White Rock Half Marathon

On December 13, 2009 I ran the White Rock Half Marathon and almost didn’t live to tell about it.  I will begin, like my previous post, on how horrible I am at training.  I had been training pretty consistently for a few weeks and was ready for the half marathon about 5 weeks before the actual race.  In the five weeks leading up to the race, I moved, went on vacation, and stopped working out in general.  I maybe had one or two runs in those five weeks… so, I’m sure you know where this is going.  Come race day, I was not prepared, but not being one to back out of a high amounts of pain, I still went ahead and gave it a shot.

Half Marathon Elevation
Unlike last race, I didn’t have a huge urge to hit the john before the race, I actually felt pretty relaxed.  The race was huge and the weather was amazing, around 45 degrees, excellent running weather.

The race began and I felt pretty good.  I was running 8 minute miles and felt amazing.  Then came mile 8 and my slow decent into the pits of hell.  At this point I can tell I’m no longer “feeling like a champ”, I’m slowing down considerably, around 30 seconds/mile, and I just don’t want to do this anymore.  Mile 10 rolls around and I’m ready to get this over with, the torture needs to stop and I just want to walk the rest of the way.  Mile 12 rolls around and I feel what will soon manifest itself as a giant cramp in my left leg.  Sure enough about 100 yards from the finish line it hits me like a ton of bricks.  A huge knot in my leg, a cramp so intense I could barely stand straight as my eyes watered.  A Kodak moment for sure.  Regardless, the crowd was pretty thick at this point and they seemed to get a little louder when they saw me struggling, so I limped the last 100 yards and across the finish line.


Ultimately, I achieved my goal which was come in under 2 hours.  With a little more training I think I can knock out 1:45 and if I push really hard maybe even 1:30.  We shall see, I still want to qualify for Boston one day.


Clock Time

Chip Time

Overall Place
1416 / 8365

10K Split Rank

10K Split Time

10 Mile Rank

10 Mile Time


2009 Akron Marathon (or How I Wished I Died)

This past weekend On September 26th, 2009 I ran my first marathon.  The 2009 Akron Marathon to be exact.  Let me tell you a little bit bout it.


I didn’t get serious about training until about two months before the actual race.  And by serious I mean only half serious.  I didn’t do a lot of runs during the week, I was lucky to maybe get 10 miles in.  However, in the last two months I did hit the pavement consistently, mainly using Hal Higdon’s Training Guide.  Regardless, by the time I hit my 20 mile run, I did not feel ready and was very nervous about this race.

Race Day

I didn’t sleep very much the night before and got to the site about 1 hour before the race.  First thing I did was hit the port-a-john.  I went and stretched for a bit and go for a very light run to get my blood flowing.  Afterwards, I stretched out some more.  Proceeded to hit the port-a-john again.  At 15 minutes before the race I positioned myself between the 4:00 and 4:30 race pacers and figured this would be a good spot for me.  My goal was to break the 4 hour mark, but ultimately was to finished.  Then the urge to hit the port-a-john hit me again.  However, it was so close to the beginning I didn’t know if I would have time.  I decided to suck it up and figured I would forget about it once I started running… bad idea!

The first 5K were great.  The weather was great (~60 F) and the rain was no where in site.

David Macias, 00:31:19 (NET) @ 5.2K Pace 8:56 , Predicted 03:54:13.00. powered by Road Runner Akron Marathon

At the 15K mark, I’m still feeling pretty good, but I have a nagging sensation that I need to hit the john, but I figure I can still tough it out.

David Macias, 01:23:11 (NET) @ 15K Pace 8:55 , Predicted 03:53:47.00. powered by Road Runner Akron Marathon

At the 25K mark I still feel pretty good even though I can tell I’ve slowed down some, but not enough to be a concern.

David Macias, 02:19:19 (NET) @ 25K Pace 8:58 , Predicted 03:55:05.00. powered by Road Runner Akron Marathon

At the 30K mark is where all hell breaks loose!  First, there were multiple warnings about this race that talked about doing hill repeats in order to be adequately prepared for this race.  I ignored them.


At Mile 16, I hit a wall and started what I called my shuffle of death.  I was in dire need of a port-a-john and I could tell my feet were dragging.  I finally hit the john around mile 18 and had a renewed sense of freedom, but it didn’t last long.  I can honestly say that the last 6 miles were the most painful miles in my life.  There were multiple times I thought to myself, “Just fall, fall and curl up in a ball, and someone will pick you up and carry you to the finish line.”  Alas, I didn’t fall and I didn’t stop.  I muscled through the nature stop on mile 18, the rain which began around mile 15, and the cramp on mile 22.  Ultimately, it was an amazing experience and can’t wait to do it again!

David Macias, 04:32:49 (NET) @ Finish Pace 10:24 . powered by Road Runner Akron Marathon


PS: A few pictures from the race.

My bib:


Crossing the finish line:


Left shoe destroyed:


Fort Worth Zoo Run Run 2008

Last weekend a couple of friends and I ran this 10k race. The weather was great, but the course not so much. It was really hilly and took a huge toll on you specially when going down hill. Overall, my time improved by around 30 seconds, which isn’t much. Will aim to bring my time considerably at the next race. :-)

Customary action shot below, honestly I look like death, but felt pretty good. I just can’t seem to take good action shot pictures.


PS: I will never run with a cotton shirt again and this is the first time I’ve ever ran with my IPOD, not sure how I feel about it.

Butterfly Boogie Customary Action Shot

David on the go. This is the customary action shot. I love the fact that they have photographers along the course just taking pictures of you. I only notice them when I’m right next to them so I’ve never really had a good action shot. Like this picture, I always look like I’m about to fall over, but I promise you that was not the case for this race. If anything I felt great and I’m ready to go on to the half marathon.

Happy runnings,


Butterfly Boogie 10k

This past Saturday we decided to run the Butterfly Boogie 10k benefiting World Craniofacial Foundation. The course ran through Katy Trail, which was my first time visiting that part of Dallas. The weather was great and overall it was a great event. My time was pretty decent and I felt great after the race. A few more week of training and I should be able to tackle a half marathon. My official time was:

77 10K: M 25-29 00:47:42

The cool thing was that I came in 77th overall in the 10k. :-) Not too shabby.


The Runners

Shoes Shoes Shoes

As some of you know I like to run. I have a 10k race this weekend and I’ve been preparing and hope to kick some butt. Now, one thing that comes with running is shoes. I never really thought that shoes played that big of a part in running. Yes, running in high heels might not be conducive to a good time, but for the most part most athletic shoes always seemed alright for running. That is until I started buying actual running shoes. Below you will find my last three pairs of shoes. All of them Asics.

Asics 2100 2120 2130

At 7 o’clock you have the 2100s, at 12 o’clock you have the 2120s, and at 4 o’clock you have my newest pair, the 2130s. These shoes are by far my favorite running shoes, light, great comfort, etc. However, one thing I don’t like is the new look. These shoes are getting more reflective and closer to a women’s style of shoe. I can’t really explain it, but the moment I saw them I knew I didn’t like the look of them. Specially compared to the 2120s, which I love. On a side note, my parents hated my 2120s, saying they looked like girl shoes. Maybe my parents were on to something.

Enjoy your run through life.


Some of us can follow directions.

So, a couple of friends and I decided to run the Cowtown Marathon 10k. Which was a lot of fun.

So, we got there a bit late since, I forgot to set my alarm to ring on weekends. There were some issues with the registration and I had to stay behind while the race started. Once I was done, I was able to go on with the race, but I was already 20 minutes behind. Doesn’t matter, since it’s all timed with chips anyway. So, I start my run and finish it in around 55 minutes. Now, this is where things get sad. I get a call on the cellphone from my sister. She is on mile 7 and doesn’t know what to do. Turns out she missed the turn off between the 10k and the half marathon. So, she decides she is just going to run the half. About 10 minutes later I get a call from Julian saying he is on mile 9 and that he is now running the half. Finally, Iggie calls Julian to tell him that he is also running the half by mistake. Needless to say, 3 different people running separate from each other all ran a half marathon by mistake.

While I felt a little left out, I don’t think I could have physically ran a half marathon. The night before the game I had 3 soccer games all for the championship. We won all 3 games and my legs were starting to cramp up at that point. Just being able to get out of bed was an accomplishment for me. However, knowing that everyone else ran a half marathon with out any real training, gives me a little bit of hope. I’ve actually been doing some training and should be ready for a half. Hopefully in the next couple of weeks.


See the pain:

The group:

The Runners