Dirty Dozen recap

Hello! How are you? Me, I’m great. Excited to share my recap of the Brazen Racing Dirty Dozen!

If I wasn’t training for a marathon I don’t know that I would have been compelled to sign up for this, but since I take my long runs on Saturday this fell perfectly into my schedule and I got a free race entry for volunteering at a race in June!

The premise of the event is that you can either do 6 hours or 12 hours. The course is a 3.37 mile loop and at the start area there is a camp area you can set up camp at to change, rest, refill water etc. At the final hour (5th and 11th hours) they open a little loop which is about a half mile you can complete to get more miles in. If you aren’t back at the finish line when your event ends, whatever loop you were in does not get credited to your total mileage. They also have a 5k/10k in the morning and another in the evening you can run in addition to your 6/12 hour event or just on their own. Capiche?

I was signed up for the 6 hour event. I had to do at least 17 miles per my training plan. I went to Fleet Feet two days before the event and asked Coach Patrick if I was feeling ok if I could do more. He said yes, but no more than 20 (don’t worry, wasn’t a concern!). Deal.

My husband was doing the event too but was more excited about what food they were serving than how many miles he was gonna run πŸ˜‚

Pre-Race

We rented a canopy from Sports Basement and had a cooler and a wagon full of stuff to set up our camp area. Hauling it up to the race was not fun.

Many of my friends were running the event so we set up camp next to them. We picked up our bibs and I was less than thrilled to see my number πŸ˜‘

7:00 am and we were off, but not without a FtoF selfie 😍

Time to run!

My friend Melissa was there too doing the 12 hour, and she has been a great friend through my marathon training. She is training for a marathon the week after mine so we have been bonding daily over how our training is going. It’s neat to share this experience with someone. When I was lined up for the event to start, she was walking over and found me and we started running together. At first it was a rather hearty crowd of people, but since I was doing run/walk intervals, I seeded myself towards the back and eventually the crowd thinned out. It was an absolutely beautiful morning, and since I had never run the event before I was taking in the course. Melissa had done it before so she knew what to expect, which was good since I wasn’t really paying attention πŸ˜‚

To sum it up, the course is hard packed dirt (anyone who is a roadrunner and considering this event, you’d be just fine), and there are a few small climbs (that get bigger as the day goes on πŸ€”), and one small section of single track trail. The views are beautiful.

I was really excited when Melissa said “look it’s Tony!” who runs the page “I am Endorphin Dude”. I love his page and have wanted to meet him for ages so it was great that he ran up to us and took a selfie!

About 1.5ish? miles in there was an aid station. We took a quick bathroom break and then enjoyed some of nature’s best food in the universe!

We continued on through the first loop and when we finished, stopped at the aid station at the finish area, and decided not to stop at our camp site and kept going.

Lap 2

It was hot and I could tell. I was drinking water like it was going out of style. We headed out again and I was still feeling pretty good. I had no idea how many miles I had run because we were laughing the entire time. We stopped at the aid station again and I desperately needed electrolyte drink. Thank goodness they had it there! We finished and I needed to fill up my water and get another pack of Skratch chews. I was eating one serving of them per lap. Off we went again!

Lap 3

We went out again, and I was still feeling pretty good. We made our usual stop at the aid station for water and electrolytes. I think this was the lap I became privy to the fact that they had an ice bucket with sponges at the aid station and OH MAN did that feel good. That sun was a beast!

As we rounded the bend to the start area again, we saw Stephanie and I think this was when we all synced up to run together. I stopped at the finish line aid station for a little boost, and off we went again.

Lap 4

I did a lot more walking this lap which was a good change of pace. Stephanie always tells me in trail running to walk the uphills. Well, in yesterday’s case I did that plus a little more πŸ€·πŸ½β€β™€οΈ.

It was nice to chat with the two of them for a good long while. We finished the loop and I stopped back at camp to get more water and more fuel. They did the same, and around we went again.

Lap 5

Stephanie ran with us for a little bit again but then broke off to continue on with her mileage goal. Around this time and during the previous lap we ran they started putting out funny posters. We saw a lot of hilarious signs as we ran. Here are a few:

The big decision

When we finished this loop I knew I wanted to go for more. At the end of this loop my Garmin hit 16.75 miles and the clock said I about 70 minutes left until my event was over. I had two choices.

  1. Go for another big loop and push hard to make sure I finished before the cutoff
  2. Run a bunch of little loops when it opened at the 5th hour

Now, I knew right away what the right choice was. I had to go for the big loop. It would put me a hair over 20 and I had plenty of time to complete it if I stayed focused. I am so glad I had Melissa with me to have someone to talk to! We stopped a camp and she changed her shoes and I changed my socks and we went off again.

Lap 6: the final!

We went for it. I gave it a little extra push and was carefully watching the time to make sure I made the cutoff. I knew even if I didn’t make the cut off, that I still put the miles in, but I still wanted it on record how hard I had worked!

I made a stop at the aid station and just got a little extra fluid to push me through the end. I had about 3 ounces of coke which helped give me a sugar boost.

As we rounded the bend I could see the clock and was like YES!!!! There were about 10 minutes left and I had made the time. I got a little confused about where to go (there were two archways set up, one for the little loop and one for the big), but crossed and got my medal and celebrated that I had crushed 20 miles! Melissa gave me a double high five and because she’s a beast, she kept going since she was doing the 12 hour event.

Done and done!

As soon as I got back to my camp area I sat down to take my shoes off. My husband quickly advised to be careful sitting on the ground because we had a guest….

Oh heck no.

I knew I needed to eat but the line for food was long and I needed to rest and drink fluids. I rolled my legs out and elevated them and found a snack. That salt tasted so good 😍

Eventually I got some real food at the BBQ. I was mighty proud of myself because they were giving out Its It’s and I didn’t take one since I knew a milkshake was in my future!

We hung out for a while and watched runners go by. The energy was contagious hearing people cheer each other on. I also met so many people while out running. It was a joy.

Eventually around 3:30 we decided after hanging out for a few hours that it was time to go home for showers and dinner. I said goodbye to everyone I saw. But before we left, we got one last picture.

Dinner time

I promised myself when I signed up for this marathon that the day I ran 20 miles I would eat burgers and a milkshake. Accomplished.

Until next time Dirty Dozen, and there will be a next time!

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