Frank Fernandez, South East, 40- 44Birthplace: Born in England, raised in Spain, and grew up in Jersey.
Occupation: Cisco Systems, Systems Engineer - Design optical networks for large Service Provider.
Married to my wonderful wife, Ana and we have two children, Alec (5) and Marcos (4), (i.e., racing age -as of Dec 31 2010 ;-) Martial arts, soccer, bike riding, swimming, and beating up papa occupy most of their active lives.
Question and Answer with Frank
What accomplishment are you most proud of? Balance. Ability to balance a demanding career, a wonderful family, and training.
When you're not racing, you like to: Eat, teach/play with the kids, eat, mountain bike, learn something new, eat.
What's the craziest experience you've ever had with XTERRA (traveling, racing or training)? While at Lake Tahoe for Nationals my wife and kids (ages one and two at the time) came within 16 feet of a bear as they were walking towards the condo. My two year old excitedly told me about the incident when I got back from riding, although all I understood (from his two year old speech) was "bear" "up" and "tree". My wife quickly cleared up the story how as they looked at each other, the bear quickly turned around and climbed up a tree. We later saw another bear being chased by the dog, but this time we were safely driving in the SUV.
What's the best thing about racing? I really enjoy racing XTERRA triathlons for the fun, competitiveness, challenge, and physical demands, but it is the quality of people I meet at these events that I value most.
What is the coolest piece of gear you own? Easy, my credit card! It enables me to purchase all kinds of other cool gear (with wife's approval, of course).
Role model/Inspiration/Favorite athlete: My parents for many reasons (i.e., hard work ethic, altruism, honesty, and many other great qualities). As far as athletes, well… too many to mention, but all within the XTERRA community. Of course all of the pros I have met (Melanie, Conrad, Dan, Craig, Brian, Mike, Andrew, Josiah, Jamie…) for making themselves so accessible to the rest of us, and taking their time to share about their experiences in an effort to help us improve. I could name and go on about how so many of XTERRA athletes are so inspiring, not just from an athletic perspective but as outstanding individuals, but I wouldn't be able to fit them all in a page. If I had to share an example I would choose Casey Fannin since he was one of the first athletes who I first met and was most impressed by when I came to this sport. He is not just an amazing athlete (multiple AG world championships to his name), but this exceptional dude is incredibly humble, giving, fun, and appreciative of life.
What do you do when you aren't training/racing? After work and training there isn't much time left, but I like to eat, spend some beach/park time with the family, read, tune bikes up. Did I mention I like to eat?
Which 2010 XTERRA races do you plan to attend? Besides the local races, Pelham, Richmond, possibly Utah, and hopefully Worlds.
Dreaded XTERRA venue: Anything at altitude wipes me out. Always beautiful venues, but brutal on my breathing. Still enjoy them!
What's your favorite aspect of XTERRA? Definitely the people! Something about the type of person who is willing to get down and dirty, deal with unforeseen challenges, and finish a race with a big smile on his/her face says lots about that person. For starters a great appreciation and love for life.
Define / describe XTERRA: The word/logo that both by kids immediately recognized and yelled out with a big smile, before they even learned to speak. A wonderful community/family of amazing people that promote an active, healthy, and fun lifestyle.
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