Race hard, stay fresh


Secret Training’s bag of ‘Strip System’ Race Day Personal Care Kit came in handy during a quadrathlon event.

It’s the things you never knew you needed until you find them in a zipped bag that sometimes matter the most. That’s what my partner G and I found while taking part in the Artemis Great Kindrochit Quadrathlon earlier this month.

The quadrathlon demanded that G and I sort, organise and pack a huge amount of kit for the event, which includes a loch swim, hike, kayak and cycle. Yet despite having little space left in Fern the Campervan, I still found a place for a small bag of Secret Training’s Strip System: Race Day Personal Care Kit.

What is Secret Training?

Well, generally speaking, Secret Training is the training that competitors try to do in secret to get ahead of their rivals. Sometimes you might hear people saying: “Oh, I’ve not been doing much running/cycling/swimming.” When the truth is they have been following a secret programme of interval/fartlek/strength building/endurance sessions.

“Secret Training” in this review is the company behind “The Strip System”, which is a range of sports products created European champion track cyclist Tim Lawson.

Tim has used his experience of training in tough conditions to come up with a range of “quality, trustworthy and dependable products that work wherever and whenever”.

Useful addition to a pile of race kit.

Useful addition to a pile of race kit.

Obsessive and accident prone by his own admission, Tim has had more than his fair share of spectacular bike falls and scrapes. But after reading the lengthy and sometimes scary ingredients list on various oil and rub product labels, Tim decided there was scope to create better formulas and work towards a “fully informed” sports brand.

“The products are made for athletes, by athletes,” added Tim. And so Secret Training and The Strip System were born.

Strip Race Day Personal Care Kit

This kit is meant to be useful on race day when you’re forced to get changed in a car park (or similar) in the middle of nowhere and you need a few personal items to be handy.

The kit includes:

  • Anti-Chafing cream
  • Start Oil
  • Micro-fibre Body Cloths
  • Post Race Wash
  • Lip Balm
  • Pins in a Tin
  • Sun Screen
  • Hand Sanitiser
  • Hygiene Wipes.

The kit and products are very male. They look and smell like men’s grooming products usually do. This is not to say that the products are not good. It’s just that this is not a product aimed at women.

I don’t really mind, when it comes to most sports products, whether they are meant for men or women. So long as they do the job they are meant to do. (The only product that I would choose specifically for females is chamois or anti-chafing cream.)


When you’re spending the weekend roughing it a bit and living in a campervan, while also racing, products such as Hygiene Wipes and Hand Sanitiser, are ideal. The sun did come out so we also made use of the Sun Screen and Lip Balm.

Hygiene wipes: They do a great job of making dirty hands clean and without any unpleasant or over-pungent odours.

Hand sanitiser: A foam that achieves clean and grease free hands in seconds. Again, no odour.

Sunscreen: A small bottle of milk-like sunscreen that rubs in easily and offers SPF 30 protection.  It smells like a cross between bubblegum and deep heat and while this might sound unpleasant it isn’t. The bottle says it is non-greasy and I agree. This is important if you want to be able to carry on doing your sport without, for example, your hands slipping off the bike handle bars.

Lip balm: Men don’t wear lip balm, do they? Oh yes they do. So many men end up using their woman’s sun block lip balm on holiday after learning how sore it can be to have parched and sunburned lips. The Strip lip balm goes on easily, has no smell and keeps lips nice and smooth.

The Pins in a Tin also proved exceedingly helpful when I realised I’d forgotten to pick up a handful of safety pins at the race registration. I like that we now have a handy place to keep spare pins, rather than left loose to roam around the bottom of a drawer.

The two Micro-fibre Towels were a godsend when I needed to shower post race and remembered both of my towels were still in T1 and T3.  They are only small but they dried my entire body and my long hair without any problem. I am not sure they are meant for a full body dry but they worked a treat!

In fact, on closer reading of the Post-race Wash it seems that the towels are meant for use with the Wash. The wash requires no showering and is used for a quick refresher between race and podium. No one wants to be the smelly sports person collecting their gold, silver or bronze trophy do they?

I also tried the Start Oil, but not during the race. I don’t like to test new products on race day because it could be a disaster if they caused an odd reaction. Start Oil is applied to muscles before a bike ride or run to warm them up. Before the start of a training session the oil did make my muscles feel warmer although I have never been convinced of the value of such creams. Do they really warm up muscles enough to train hard on them or do they simply make the muscles feel nice before you head out the door? Start Oil certainly made my muscles feel warm and zingy and eased the pain of post-race muscle fatigue if nothing else! The oil smells like deep heat, although not as pungent.

strip-bag In conclusion, The Strip System is a nice idea. The products have been well thought out and I would suggest the set would make a good gift for a sporty guy. Once they have tried the products they might well return to the Secret Training shop to order individual items, which are priced very reasonably.

£49.99 from Secret Training Shop

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