Houston man finishes Iron Man Triathalon from home during national pandemic

HOUSTON – Fernando Lopez loves participating in Iron Man races, and his wife Andrea Pinzon enjoys supporting him through them.

"I get addicted to it," said Lopez. "I end up doing the craziest races. You name it. I've done it."

But the Galveston Iron Man Triathalon race, which he planned to run this weekend, was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

That didn't stop him. He got creative.

"At some point, he just said, 'I'm going to make it work,'" Pinzon said.

And, they made it work and broadcasted the entire experience on Facebook Live.

With his wife capturing the footage, Pinzon completed a full Iron Man race from his home, including the National Anthem and prayer.

"I swam for 1.2 miles, then I transitioned to the bike," said Fernando, who has a pool in his backyard.

He finished the race on his treadmill. He had a simulation to add the hills and other effects of running outside.

However, this race was different without people cheering for him in-person.

"He would see people cheering him on (online), and he would be answering questions," said Pinzon.

Lopez and Pinzon are both immigrants, and they wanted the proceeds of the race go to a cause close to their hearts, Casa Juan Diego.

"We want to give to those people who we know don't get anything from the government," said Lopez. "That's what they do. They help immigrants, they help refugees. They don't care who you are or where you're coming from."

Thousands watched, commented, and virtually cheered Lopez on.

“Nothing is impossible,” he said. “To me, whatever it takes, I will get it done. I also wanted to show people that no matter what, no matter the struggle, no matter the sacrifice, it’s possible.”

To learn more about Fernando’s Triathalon, visit his Facebook page at www.facebook.com/Forevertriusa/.