“I have passed on many things that I could easily regret, but I don’t regret any of them, because that also gives room for something else to come that I’m proud of”
-Javier Bardem (actor)
Charles Trujillo has come a long way from being a pool rat, riding his Big Wheel, and out running the neighborhood bully! He began his running career by setting the 1984 Colorado State record at Northglenn High School in the two-mile event. Following that early success, Trujillo was awarded a full running scholarship to the University of Colorado, Boulder in 1984. At CU he won two Big Eight titles and ran his way onto the NCAA All American Track & Field team three times. After graduating from CU, Trujillo coached track and field at CU before racing professionally for six years on team Reebok. During that time he joined two US world teams, finishing 11th overall at the Junior World Cross Country Championships in Portugal, and competing in the World Half Marathon Championships in Oslo, Sweden.
After training in Mexico for three months prior to the 1998 Boston Marathon, at the age of 33, Trujillo decided to retire from competitive running. Over the years his body had gotten pretty banged up and he no longer could manage the training required to be competitive in long distances. In short, Trujillo was burned out and getting whupped in races! So he stepped away from the sport and competing in general. By 2010, Trujillo felt that 12 years away from competitive running had actually helped his body recover from all those years of hard-core training and racing. It has taken more than two years to get back into top racing form, but the hard work has paid off. After turning 45 in 2011, Trujillo decided to resurrect his athletic career, but now as a triathlete.
After only eight races in his first triathlon season in 2011, he realized that he could still lay the hammer down! His initial mind set was to see how well he could do in his age group, but what happened was much better: he found himself competing for the overall win at most races.
Competing as a true master’s division amateur has brought him a great deal of personal satisfaction, and regularly beating fast guys half his age feels pretty good too. His first place finish overall at the Denver Sprint Triathlon and a fourth place in LA in 2011 persuaded him to set his sights even higher moving forward.
He now plans to train and race with a vengeance, with the goal of dominating his age group and being a serious overall podium threat at every race he enters. In fact, from 2011 to 2019, he’s logged over 35 AG podium victories, and in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 he earned USTF All American status.
Trujillo passed another milestone in November 2015, when he participated in the first ITU Draft-Legal Sprint Triathlon for amateurs in CLERMONT, Florida and took fifth in his age group. This high finish in a race that draws some of the nation’s most accomplished amateur triathletes qualified him for the 2016 ITU Draft-Legal Sprint World Championships held in Cozumel Mexico in September, 2016. His success continued the following year when he secured another US team selection for the 2017 ITU Draft-Legal Sprint World Championships in Rotterdam, Netherlands. On October 8, 2017, Trujillo won his first-ever ITU Draft-Legal Sprint National Championships in SARASOTA, Florida. This finish once again garnered Trujillo a spot on Team USA for the ITU Draft-Legal Sprint World Championships that was held in Gold Coast, Australia in 2018. On October 13, 2018, Trujillo finished second at the ITU Draft Legal Sprint National Championships in SARASOTA, Florida. Showing laudable consistency, he earned another spot on Team USA for the ITU Draft-Legal Sprint World Championships, held in Lausanne, Switzerland in 2019. On November 16, 2019, Trujillo finished seventh at the ITU Draft Legal Sprint National Championships in TEMPE, Arizona. This place gains Trujillo yet another World Team appointment with the championships to be held in Edmonton, Canada on August 21, 2020.
His continuing goals are to learn as much as he can about triathlon training and to continue getting faster in all three disciplines. He continues to shoot for a “perfect” undefeated season. In addition, he would like to help others become healthier, find their athlete within, and promote the sport of triathlon and duathlon. His off-season training is geared toward helping him get close to finishing the sprint-distance discipline in one hour, which includes a sub-18 minute 5k at the end of the race. He is currently structuring his race schedule to focus on the top sprint triathlons in Colorado, National and World Championship events. He currently trains with the number one triathlon club in Colorado, the Rocky Mountain Triathlon Club, which boasts over 400 + members.