A year ago the Dirty 30 was my first ultra marathon. I had no idea what I was getting myself into at the time, it was a little scary, but it was a huge learning experience. Running the Dirty 30 again this year was a no brainier.
Training philosophy – Training for the Dirty 30 was pretty low key with the monsoon-esq season we have been having in Colorado this Spring. My only goal going into the Dirty 30 was to beat my time from last year.
The Course – This course is an ass kicker for sure, its 32 miles with 7500+ feet of climbing with a huge chunk of that coming at mile 26 with a summit of Windy Peak.
Race Day – I opted to drive up to the race area before and catch some sleep in the back of the Forrester. There were about 10 others cars in the lot too so I was definitely not alone with the idea of car camping the night before. Sleeping in my car at the took away a lot of the stress of having to be up at the butt crack of dawn and then finding my way up to the race.
This was by far my best race ever, I nailed the nutrition, had no cramps and was surrounded by incredibly supportive people all day, everything just fell into place! In the first 5 miles of the race I recognized a familiar voice coming up the hill behind me, it was the voice of Sherpa John (The badass HPRS race director). I ended up sticking with him for the next 25 miles of the race, chatting about life, running, and video games made the race fly by. Having someone to pace off of was a new experience for me and I think it was a huge contributor to my awesome race day.
I came into the mile 17 aid station and instantly recognized Meredith and Kim, it was awesome to see these 2 at the aid station. Up to this point in the race I had been taking it pretty easy, just saving my legs for Windy Peak. Last year Windy Peak kicked my ass! John had picked up the pace a little so I lost him before Windy Peak. Luckily Meaghan caught up to me half way up Windy Peak so I had someone else to ninja pace off of. Its shocking how much having someone to talk with just puts your mind in a different place and makes the miles tick by. I was on cloud 9 at the summit of Windy Peak because I knew it was mostly downhill to the finish line. The last few miles of the race flew by and I managed to knock just under 1 hour off of my time from last year. I had Meredith and Kim waiting at the finish line for me, it was really nice having my peeps at the finish line.