Meet the team: David Fuentes
David Fuentes - 32 - Austin, TX
What is your sporting origin story? How did it all start for you?
I played soccer for roughly 11-12 years growing up. Running was just something I did during soccer. After I didn't make the high school soccer team my sophomore year, I decided to run JV track that spring. I ended up running times just as quick/quicker than the varsity team, so they asked me to come run cross country in the fall of my junior year. Two state titles, NCAA XC All-American, and many other wins later, here I am!
What is your "why" for racing, the deeper thing beyond the finish line medal that makes you strive for more?
Wanting to take my mind and body to places it hasn't been.
Do you have a mantra for racing and training? Where did it come from?
I typically say a short prayer, followed by the phrase 'No Pain!' (Phrase that Rocky Balboa's trainer 'Duke' is yelling at Rocky in his corner, during his fight against the Russian in Rocky II.) Then I typically smack myself in the face a couple times to wake up.
What's the most embarrassing thing you've done while racing?
Not finishing. Nothing like the walk of shame back to the start to make you re-think your choices.
If racing doesn't pay the bills, what does? What's your day job?
Software Engineer by day, vintage camper van and travel trailer renter by night (www.tincantravel.com).
Who is the person in your life that inspires you to constantly work to find the best version of yourself?
The man up above.
Tell us about your biggest race fail.
I broke my foot 4 miles into a 24 mile trail/mountain race, and had to hike about 7 miles on a bum foot to the next aid station to quit the race. My team took a penalty because of my mishap.
What about your biggest accomplishment?
So far it would be winning Team Gold at USA Mountain Champs. I learned that sharing a victory with teammates is better than alone.
What's the most beautiful thing you've seen during a race?
Racing through the Swiss alps at Sierre-Zinal 30k. But overall seeing the finish line of any race is a beautiful site.
What's the workout you dread most and why? How do you push yourself through it?
To be honest I typically enjoy doing the ones i dread, it can really teach a lot about yourself.
What's the workout you love most and why?
The ones that seem to be the most daunting. Tempos that have hill repeats thrown in the mix.
You can only bring one type of fuel (food) for a race, what to you bring? Why?
Breakfast tacos. Because tacos are egg-cellent
What are some of your bucket list races, events, activities?
World Championship Pack Burro races
When it's time to hang up the shoes on competitive racing, how will you spend all that free time?
That's too far away to think about.