Dirty Secret Trail Race Report

First an apology.  I was a dope and didn't take any pictures before, during or after the race.  I am not sure why. I simply forgot.  The excitement of participating in a race had me on edge a bit I think.
UPDATE:  pics now from website. 

I originally registered for the long course of the Dirty Secret Trail Race up in Cool, CA.  Long course is approx 11 miles.  After much soul searching, and basically some not so good training runs, I emailed the race director a few weeks ago and asked to drop down to the short course which is approximately 6 miles.  In no time at all,  I received confirmation that I was now registered for the short course.  Phew. That was a real relief.

My training has been pretty hit and miss the last few weeks.  I will have a good couple of weeks-- PT, weights, running, yoga, cycling.  And then something will come up-- work, family, zombie apocalypse-- and all goes to hell.  Its been a struggle to find balance between all the things I like to do and still try to remain gainfully employed.  That being said, interestingly, my back injury/butt injury has been pretty good.  I have occasional stiffness and maybe one day a month i'll have pain, but it is very very manageable--Especially after a Rye Whiskey Manhattan.  But I digress.

So dirty secret!  I was a nervous wreck honestly.  I have no idea why.  My tummy was giving me a bit of trouble before the race.  I ran into a few people I knew while I tried to nonchalantly scrape the TP off my shoe post-porta potty.  With 5 minutes to start, i realized that I left my Garmin in my car, so I sprinted there and back to the start-- we'll call it my warm up.  I wrestled the damn 310xt onto my wrist just as the horn went off for my wave start.

I had planned to go in the very last wave (slower than a 9 min mile) but SOMEHOW got talked into going into the earlier short course wave (faster than 9 minute mile).  I am not sure if this was good or bad idea but either way, I seemed to be huffing and puffing about the same amount as most of the people I could see in front and behind me.

The course in Cool, CA is absolutely beautiful.  Lovely single track and a bunch of early hills to really get your heart pumping.  I forgot that being in the middle-to back of the pack, the dust kicked up my earlier runners irritates my lungs.  Note to self:  either be way in front or way in back in next race.

What was fascinating to me were the sheer number of people who seemed woefully unprepared for a trail race.  Several near me carried no water at all and started bitching within the first mile about how hot it was and where was the aid station?  Uh, ok.  I eventually dropped those 3 young ladies but not before I heard numerous, "This is stooopid!!! Why are weeeeee doing thisssss???" (imagine that in a surly teenagers voice and you understand why I had to drop them)

It was hot that day and i did nearly empty my 20 oz handheld within the hour it took me to finish.

Overall great race, I definitely will do it again next year.  Since it was my first time racing the short course, do I get to claim my result as a PR? I'm thinking yes!

1:07 overall for 5.8 miles.  Meh.  Not the best i've ever done, but not the worst either.


Next up is either Nike Women's 5k OR  She Rocks the Trails OR Blood Sweat and Beers.  Or maybe all three. ;)


  1. I was really nervous for my first trail race too!

  2. You can definitely call it a PR! And you did great! And I love running in Cool, grew up not too far from there, actually!


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