Biking and Running 101 with Arland Macasieb

By Jasmine Perez, Multimedia Producer, Sports Unlimited

Posted at Jul 23 2012 09:45 AM | Updated as of Jul 29 2012 01:57 AM

It takes a hefty amount of endurance, strong will and patience to be an elite Pinoy triathlete, but this grueling sport has been Arland Macasieb's passion for over sixteen years now.

Pinoy triathlete Arland Macasieb

Macasieb not only holds a masters’ degree in Exercise Science, he is also a regular at the winners' podium. He has had a long list of wins, among them two at the South East Asian games and three at the Philippine National Triathlon Championships. Now that more and more Filipinos are embracing the sport of triathlon, Macasieb has gained renown as Coach Arlandmac.

Sports Unlimited's Dyan Castillejo, together with triathlete friends Belle Grandinetti and Joey Torres, invited Coach Arland for some drills. Belle and Joey have already finished several triathlons but mastering the sport with none other than our country’s triathlon champ is a great chance one can’t miss, whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned triathlete.

Biking 101

Arland first gave the avid triathlon learners the essentials of proper bike fit. First, one must adjust the saddle height. One's knees must be slightly bent when the pedal is extended down.  One’s knees should also be aligned over the forefoot and the crank arms parallel with the ground. The fit of the handlebar must also be checked. The elbows must be bent a little bit and the arms must be relaxed. Proper bike fit can actually prevent injuries.

Macasieb teaching how to set up one's bicycle correctly

After warming up, first on the agenda were small chain ring easy spin drills. Then, they transitioned to faster spins to improve their speed.

Biking can work many parts of the body, so Coach Arland gave a few tips on how to engage the hamstrings, legs, glutes and even the core.

One cool drill to perfect pedal strokes while working out the hamstrings is to isolate one leg, and pedal one foot at a time.

There are also several ways to build strength and stamina. To do this, one must work on intervals. From easy drills, shift to harder efforts. One can add resistance and stand like going uphill to heighten the intensity.

Biking shouldn’t be boring. Whether you’re working indoors or outdoors, spin with a positive “can do” attitude!

Running Drills

Running is one of the simplest sports in the planet but it actually entail a lot of practice to master. Coach Arland Macasieb, a veteran of long distance triathlons and marathons, knows the science of running by heart. He was more than willing to teach Sports Unlimited some drills to improve speed and efficiency.

Macasieb running with Sports Unlimited host Dyan Castillejo

First, is to warm up with a few laps. Then, hop and march in order to learn the proper foot strike. The foot must land on one’s mid-foot first, before the heel touches the ground.

The body must lean slightly forward to harness the power of gravity as one moves forward. This not only saves energy, it can also help prevent injuries.

It is also important to improve proper arm swing.

To improve foot strike and work the muscles of the feet, one can run barefoot.  Running is definitely more than just speed. It is also about utilizing efficiency and improving form.

A good way to cool down is by doing some floor exercises. First, work out obliques with side-to-side twists exercise. Then work the buttocks with some lifting. Afterwards, exercise the core, legs and upper body with leg lifts, planks and leg swing.

So if you’re thinking of getting into sports, start your road to fitness now. Find no excuses! As the famous quotation goes, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”

For more information on Coach Arland Macasieb’s triathlon lessons, check out

Air date: July 7, 2012