Stories

La Diva’s Conquests: The Fritz Labastida’s Narrative

 

Fabulous Barefoot Diva. Fritz in a fierce starting position ready to grace another track.

©Fritz Labastida

 

Every race this Diva runs depicts of triumphs along tracks and life. These races graciously define the character she has - of self - of family - and of the community where she belongs. 

Fritzie Pepito Labastida started to run races in 2009. What started out to be a healthy and productive way of relieving her self of life’s stress and preventing her self from falling into depression eventually became a career where she earned her rightful place – The Fabulous Barefoot Diva of the running community.

Fun runs that begin with 3Km distance improved to 5, 10, 16, 21, 32 until 42Km Full Marathon was reached. As distance expanded her running skills greatly improved.  The increased distances she runs reflected the intensity of her desire for the sport.

Although she was aware of the required shoes and outfit to run races, she made runs in sneakers and comfortable clothes that will make her cross finish lines.

Her time to shine came when an event required runners to go barefoot and in costume. Aptly enough, a star was born; she had a baby costume and run barefoot.

 In the succeeding run races that followed, a barefooted Fritz was seen traversing roads. Aware of the possible injuries barefoot running may inflict her, the diva declares of developing keen observation skills of the roads she tracks - constantly on a look out for safety’s sake. Barefoot running has kept her awareness at its height during runs.

 Then came mountaineering events where she took these opportunities as challenges that expand her horizons; also barefooted.

Not contented with the challenges posed by mountaineering and running, Fritz seized opportunities of joining triathlon. She runs, she bikes but she was not sure if she can survive the swim part. The little skill that she had on swimming pulled her through the first ever triathlon that she raced.

This sports diva had come a long way from the time she had that 3Km fun run. She is now part of the FIT PH triathlon team which is one of the biggest triathlon teams in the country. This team, she openly shares, helped her improve in her sports. The training the team provides her made a better athlete version of a diva. 

 

Overwhelming support. This Diva experiences the affection of people whose lives she touches. They moved mountains to make sure that she continues to be an inspiration when they gifted her with a new bike – for her work and for her sports.

© Brian Dee Sports

 

She also has the Fabulous Running Divas as a source of support for her chosen endeavor.

One inspiration she proudly has is Queen Faith. She addresses the beauty queen-triathlete Alexandra Faith Garcia as such because of her admiration for the accomplishments the latter has earned under her feat.

Fritz can now be seen running all over the country. She does the tracks barefooted and in full costume – most of which where hemmed through creativity executed on materials from bargain stores.

Her fulfillment on what she gains from running is deeply rooted. She is able to keep her self up and about as a healthy person; a healthy child whose strength is harnessed to continually support aging parents in their home province. To provide for their needs remains a top priority in her life.

She is also fulfilled by the flashes of smile people accord her during races. She hopes that these smiles translate into inspiration that despite the shortcomings in life, people can live a healthy lifestyle in a fun way.

This diva declares: “I am a Proud Filipino.” In the Philippines, perhaps, this will gain little cognizance as we all are proud Filipinos. It may be an unconscious actuation of declaring readiness to compete internationally. But wait until we see her race there. Maybe the international scene is this diva’s kingdom up for conquest.

 

   

La Diva in all her glam. Who could’ve thought that she spends nights on pavements before races? The high price of accommodations forces her to find comfort along the sides of streets to have that much needed beauty rest before a race.

©Fritz Labastida

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