Posted by: Karen | November 14, 2005


In following up on some comments on my Edworthy report…

My trail races are dangerous? Nah. You folks flatter me. I don’t even remember on which body parts I landed in the first slip, I bounced so fast. I remember the embarrassment more than the ground contact.

Ice is only dangerous if you’re not balanced when you step on it. When you’re looking at a slippery piece of ground to cover, you just need to plan what you’re going to do with your body if it goes out from under you. It takes some experience and good reflexes/instinct to do this quickly, but sometimes the faster you get over a bit of ice, the less contact you make with it, and the less time your body has to go sideways.

I think it helps that I’m short and don’t have so far to fall, too.

I had the choice to take the course/ice at whatever pace I could manage. The pace I chose just happened to,


…carry a certain amount of instantly retractable risk.

When I hit the ground the second time I just hadn’t quite retracted it instantly enough. 🙂

I consider this course one of the hardest to negotiate in the series, with its very steep inclines and ice/mud. The rest of the winter races it’s usually frozen enough to a) have snow in which to land or b) allow me to wear my Yaktrax for more traction, plus the other courses are not as steep.

I’m only out there for about an hour most times – only 8 km. No heat exhaustion or sun stroke, no dehydration or hyponatremia worries, no time for electrolyte imbalances, sunburn, poison ivy or nasty portapotties. In comparison to some of my triathlete friends, no jelly fish, sharks or gators, no chance of drowning, no dysfunctional bike chains, brakes or derailleurs, no road traffic or flat tires.

Hey, what’s a little wet dirt and frozen water? And I get to eat soup and COOKIES 🙂



  1. Enjoying the insanity does not make it less dangerous. But it does sound like fun.

  2. Ha! You can’t hide it. I saw the pics on Dawn’s site and that is one crazy course! Not that I blame you for wanting to run it, but its not for the timid that for sure. 🙂

    Congrats on a great race, Karen. Last of the muddy ones for a while.

  3. I agree, our sport is extremely low risk. Whenever I train for tris, I’m much more worried about getting hit by a truck on my bike or eaten by a shark in the cold Pacific. Of course, this area is occasionally prone to mountain lion attacks on the trails. I’d better stop, I’m scaring myself…

  4. Not that I am supposed to encourage “food as a reward” but I would run in some crazy stuff for soup and cookies, too! Keep up the fun runs!

  5. […] That said, don’t let my little set-back deter you from trying out trail running – because it’s really not very dangerous. Anyone who knows me well knows that I am not a person who takes really big risks. I’ve talked about the manageable risks of trail racing before, but now I’ll use my overall personal cross country stats prove a point (because this blog IS all about me, eh?). […]


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