From thinking that he would never be able to run again in his life, to becoming the European duathlon champion. Or how to make a setback, a motivation. It is the story of Daniel Aguirre. A 47-year-old man from Huelva who has achieved, for the second time, gold in the European Championship, held a few days ago in Bilbao. Eleven years ago, he fractured his tibia and fibula in an accident at work. “The doctors told me that he was not going to be able to run anymore,” he tells NIUS. A fan of athletics since he was a child, the prognosis made him fall into depression, until he decided to change the script and not resign himself. He started with the bicycle, for several years, then to walk fast and, little by little, he managed to run. “I saw that I could and I was encouraged to start duathlon competition,” he explains. A discipline that combines cycling and running “I can’t afford competitions outside of Spain” He started with a borrowed bike and even so, he debuted in his first competition getting a podium. “This encouraged me to buy one and continue participating. Later, he has managed to be European champion twice and runner-up in the world. Of course, it only participates in the tests that are held in Spain. “I can’t afford to travel abroad. The Federation pays us the registration but the trip is at our expense”, he explains. Because the European champion does not live from the duathlon but from his work in the Cathedral of Seville. Daniel is in charge of shopping at the Seville monument’s souvenir shop. “I am in charge of making the orders, receiving, pricing and restocking”, he explains. A job from Monday to Friday, in the morning, which allows him to maintain his training level and be able to compete during the weekends. One does not live on medals, he admits. “It is not an Olympic discipline. Without sponsors, it does not give to live. The king of sports is football and the rest does not exist”, laments this athlete. In addition, Daniel spends part of his vacations working as a waiter at the April Fair in Seville. A week of hard and intense work that for him represents “an economic injection” with which to continue paying for his other ‘job’. Training at a certain level requires many expenses. Trainers, physios, nutritionists, as well as a good bike and equipment. Even so, Daniel continues to fight to fulfill his dream. He didn’t throw in the towel when an accident nearly thwarted his passion for athletics. Overcome that, he says, there is no goal that this champion can resist.
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