Ironman Lake Placid Triathlon

Ironman Lake Placid 2013 – Race Report

The end of the journey to my second Ironman started early. I had set the alarm for 4:30am, but ended up not needing it. Breakfast consisted of a couple of bagels with cream cheese. I also drank a bottle of my custom drink mix to make sure I was hydrated and ready to go. My Dad drove me over to the Crown Plaza parking lot so I could walk down the hill with my morning gear and get going.

First thing I did was get marked, because they don’t let you into the transition area unless you have been marked. After finding a short line and quickly getting marked I walked into the transition area and the first person I see is Heidi and Jan pumping up their tires. Julie shows up a few minutes later after getting her bike all set. I borrow Jan’s pump and head down to my bike and fill the tires, put the water bottles on and calibrate my power meter. The bikes are all set so we head out of transition.

Outside we wait for Roger to come and get Jan’s pump and backpack and while waiting I take a quick walk around to try and find my Dad. He was wearing a bright orange shirt so he would be easy to find. The problem is that he isn’t the only one that thought of that and I’m not able to find him. Roger makes it down to the Mobil station where we are all waiting and takes a couple of pictures and a quick video before we head over to Team BPC for the group photo.

We get over to Dave (my coach) and Michelle’s condo and I put on my wetsuit and leave my morning clothes in a bag there. I was going to leave the bag on the transition rack for later, but it was looking like rain and I didn’t want everything to get wet if I was going to wear it after the race. I’m pretty much ready to go at this point. I have my cap, goggles, a Gu and I’m wearing my wetsuit. Let’s get this rolling! But first we have to get the team photo. We all walk over to get the team photo for BPC (Breakthrough Performance Coaching) and from there we can see the swim start. It’s just before 6am and they are not letting anyone in the water to warm up just yet. Jan is getting anxious at this point and wants to get started, as we all are really.

The pros are going off at 6:25 and the rest of us are going off at 6:30. We can see people warming up in the water now and starting to line up for the rolling wave start. Jan is getting really antsy now. “Can we hurry up and take this picture?”, “Shouldn’t we be over there right now?” Finally we get the picture done and head over, to Jan’s relief!

The Swim

This is the first year they had a rolling wave start. This is similar to a road race where all the athletes seed themselves accordingly so that we don’t all swim over the top of each other. Coach Dave is up front in the 60 minutes or under. Jan and Michelle Roy are in the middle of that wave somewhere. Michelle Sek and myself are at the back of the 60 minutes or under wave. I’m not sure where everyone else is at this point. I turn and look up into the crowd and I spot my Dad up on the hill and he sees me and waves. Glad I saw him before the start. The gun fires and we are off. Michelle and I make our way down into the water and start out. The beginning of the swim is better than last time and I can feel the draft as I’m just being pulled along. That feeling lasts for about half way down the first loop. Then it just turns into a mess as people start swimming back and forth across in front of me and I have to get out wide to avoid them. The problem with being out wide is that you don’t get any draft and you have to swim a longer distance. Once I make the turn and start to head back I stayed about 10 yards wide of the line and just cruised in for a 31:05 first split. Not bad and I figured it would open up a little more on the second loop. Second loop went well until about halfway down on the way back. That is when I ran into the back of the slowest people and started to have to swim around and do a lot more sighting than I wanted to. The second loop was almost two and a half minutes slower. Total time for the swim was 1:04:37, almost the same 2 years ago.


I came out of the water and quickly took off my watch and got my wetsuit down to my waist so that the wetsuit strippers could pull it off for me. As always the volunteers are awesome and the guy quickly pulled the wetsuit off my legs, pulled me up and had me on my way. On my way over to transition I hear Jan’s family yelling my name, quick turn and wave and I’m on my way to get my transition bag. I get into the tent and try to hurry, but I’m also trying not to forget anything. I forget to put the heart rate monitor on, so I try to hurry up and get it on. T1 is slow at 7:21. Kelly comments to me afterwards that she though something happened to me because I took so long. I mean it was long, but it wasn’t that long!

The Bike

I didn’t realize it during the swim, but it had started to rain. I just kind of laughed to myself because I had done so many training rides in the rain, I just figured it was going to be one of those days. Turns out that by the time I got to the bottom of the descent into Keene it had already stopped and it didn’t rain again.

My goal on the bike was to stay at the power numbers my coach had set out. This was particularly important at the beginning of the bike course when everyone is racing up the climb out of town full of adrenaline. It’s a hard thing to do, watch everyone pass you going up the hill. Some of the people were standing and grinding away and I just though I’ll be seeing them on the run. I felt pretty good after the climb up and the descent and I remembered thinking to myself this is where I let the ride get away from me last time. On the long flat out to Ausable I just rode way to easy the last time and didn’t pay attention to the power numbers. This time I was prepared and held the Watts all the way out and made it to the turn or just over 30 miles out in about one hour and thirty minutes. That’s pretty much the half way point time wise for the bike course. The way back goes slower because you are climbing back up to Lake Placid.

On the way out to the Ausable passed Jan at around mile 22 or so. She was looking pretty strong and was feeling good. After chatting with her for a little bit I headed out to the turn around. Just as I got to the beginning of the stretch of road where you can see the riders coming back I saw Coach Dave. I started looking for everyone else after I made the turn to come back from Ausable. First I saw Jan again, she was not far behind me and was still looking strong. Then I saw Heidi, not very far behind Jan. Michelle was next with a big smile. All three of them were doing their first Ironman.

When you return from the out and back you take a right and head toward Jay. I just took my time and spun up the hills keeping my power numbers in check. At around mile 40 or so Heidi finally caught up to me. She was riding well and having a good day. We rode up into the short out and back and saw Jan as we were heading back out. I remember telling Heidi that Jan was killing the bike. Heidi started pulling further ahead and I think I finally lost sight of her around mile 50.

The final hills up into town are probably the easiest on the course. Everyone is yelling and screaming on Papa Bear. It is a lot of fun to ride up that hill with everyone cheering you on. The first loop of the bike took me 3:03:36. I was pretty happy with that. I was thinking I might be able to come in off the bike in around 6 hours and I wasn’t far off on that first loop. However, I knew the second loop would be a little slower. The question would be, how much slower?

Starting the second loop I was still feeling pretty good and again watched the power numbers on the climb out of town and stayed in control. This time around there were not too many people passing me and I was actually starting to pass a few back that I tried to crush the course on the first loop. I made it out to the turn in 1:28:28, that was only 2 minutes slower than the first time around and now I’m 86 miles into the ride.

The last 26 miles were not as kind though and I ended up losing more time over the first loop. My time this time around for the last 26 miles back to Lake Placid was 1:42:44, the first loop it was 1:37:06. So lost almost 6 minutes on the last part of the second loop.

Total time for the bike course was 6:14:38, that is over 35 minutes faster than 2 years ago. While I wanted to go under 6 hours I also wanted to stay with the power numbers and see where it got me. I figured if I had something left after the bike I’d push the run.


The transition from the bike to the run was pretty uneventful. They grabbed my bike and I went and got my run gear and headed to the changing tent. Changed into my running gear and headed out. The nice thing about this year was that I didn’t need sunscreen because it was so overcast.

The Run

The goal on the run was to maintain E pace or E pace + 30 for the first 20 miles and then see what I have left. For me that means 8:30 to 9:00 minute miles. I did ok with that through the first half of the marathon. Actually, I did that ok all the way through mile 16. At that point the wheels kind of fell off and I just did what I could to hang on. I think part of my problem is that I may not have taken in enough nutrition late in the marathon. Thinking back on it now I don’t remember taking any Gel in the second half of the marathon. I made sure to drink at each water stop. I would have Ironman Perform and ice at each one and made sure to drink it down because I didn’t want to cramp. The marathon ended in 4:05:10. Not exactly what I wanted to run, I think I blew it by not having enough Gel, I remember taking it early on, just not in the second half. That was about a 9 minute improvement over my first Ironman Lake Placid marathon.

Total time for the Ironman was 11:36:29, a 50 minute improvement from the first time I did Ironman Lake Placid in 2011.

I want to thank my family for all of their support. Kelly, Mackenzie and JP have been great through all of the training and it always lifts you up when you know you are going to be seeing them on race day as you come in on the bike or the run.

I would also like to thank my coach, Dave Sek, from Breakthrough Performance Coaching for preparing me for Ironman. I thought he did an outstanding job of training me and getting me ready for Ironman. I felt like I showed up to the race injury free and ready to go.

Congratulations to all of the other Ironman finishers that I trained with at one point or another as well:
Janet Barnes (Kona qualified – awesome Janet!)
Pat Canonica
Jan Dik
Heidi Moulison
Michelle Roy
Dave Sek (Kona qualfied – 2nd time!)
Michelle Sek
Brigid Sullivan
Julie Valenti
Melinda Vaturro

Ironman Lake Placid Race

Ironman Lake Placid 2011 Race Report

The beginning of the last day of the journey started at 4:19am for me. I had set my alarm for 4:20 and my father walks in to tell me it is 4:19. Thanks Dad, I could have used that extra minute of sleep, I would have been so much faster!!!

I got up and had a bagel and a stinger waffle to start the day. Drank a little bit of Gatorade and my Dad brought me over to the hotel where everyone else in the group was staying. I had dropped off my wetsuit and clothes at Janet and Brian’s room the night before so I didn’t have to lug it around. I also had made up my Ironman Perform drinks for the bike the night before so I just had to grab them out of the fridge on the way out the door.  The ride over was short and pretty quiet, my Dad wished me good luck and I walked the rest of the way to the hotel. Before big races like this I get pretty focused and quiet trying to make sure I don’t forget anything.

I got to the hotel room and threw on my bike shorts that I was going to wear under the wetsuit and we all headed down to get numbered and put our nutrition on the bikes. Halfway down the street Brian says “I know what Julie forgot”.  Julie’s face has panic
written all over it, but realizes quickly that he is talking about the bike pump. She heads back up to get the pump while the rest of us get numbered. She finally gets back, gets numbered and we head into the transition area. I go to my bike bag and get my Garmin out to record the ride and get my bike all setup. One of the best tips of the weekend of Brian’s many was to double bag our transition bags. It rained the night before the race and some people opened their bags in the morning to find their stuff soaked.

After leaving transition we head back up to the hotel room and wait around, try to drink some water. I have been drinking for two days now to make sure I’m hydrated and yet my mouth feels dry. Just the nerves of the upcoming event. Everyone goes to the bathroom one last time even though I’m sure we all went right into the Lake and pee in our wetsuits. Just before we leave the room I take down a PowerShot Gel quick to get a few more calories before the swim. I didn’t eat that much in the morning, I just find it too hard
to eat a lot before something like this, again, probably nerves.

With wetsuits on we head down to Mirror Lake. The swim was wetsuit optional, meaning that if you wanted a slot for Kona or an award for something you had to swim without the wetsuit. I choose to swim with the wetsuit because I knew I wasn’t going to be anywhere near a slot for Kona and also to conserve as much energy as possible on the swim. The water temp was 77 degrees, so getting into the water was no problem. We swam over to the back of the masses and stood near the beach to watch the pros go out, they get a 10
minute head start. After the Pros left they played the National Anthem. While they played the National Anthem my thoughts drifted to my brother-in-law serving in Afghanistan, as usually happens. At that point I said to myself that no matter what happened today I wasn’t coming out of the race unless they pulled me out, no quitting! After the anthem I turned and hugged Janet, Julie and Brian and wished them good luck and moved up toward the front of the swim start.

The Swim

I started the swim about 5 people deep from the line and just about in the middle. After watching the videos of the swim starts I really wasn’t sure what to expect, would it just be bodies banging into each other or what?

The gun goes off and we start. I start out breathing on every stroke and sighting on every other stroke to try and figure out what is going on. People are packed in all around me and I’m looking for some open water. Even though the Lake was calm with all the people swimming it became very choppy quickly, more choppy than I expected, but nothing that
interfered with my swim. After a few minutes I was able to get past a few people and see some open water. At this point I’m probably about 15 feet from the line. The line I’m referring to is the line under water that goes the length of the swim and holds the buoys. The problem now becomes the people that started way out to the right that are trying to get to the line, they continually cross in front of me, which while kind of a pain, isn’t too bad. The other thing that is happening now is some of the moron swimmers that are
wound up and probably over exhorting themselves are hitting the back of my calves while they swim and I’m having trouble moving around some of the people crossing over. Instead of just swimming around me, if they are that fast, they are just slowing us both down at this point. I finally found some open water and swim a little right to get to it and get the guy off my legs. Now that I’m about half way down the first loop before the turn I can finally start to relax a little more and breath bi-laterally. For me this is when the swim really started as I was able to just relax and go, I’m almost on top of the line, I stayed probably about 3 to 4 feet away from it the rest of the swim. After making the turns relatively easily and coming back in without incident I look up at the clock and see that it says 41:xx. My first thought, was “well that sucked”, then I realized that I had to take 10 minutes off because the pros had not finished the swim yet. The second loop I pretty much stayed 3 to 4 feet away from the line and just relaxed and passed people, because by now anyone faster than me was already ahead of me. As I came in toward the finish there
was one guy who was trying to pace himself off of me, which I thought was pretty funny because he was dying just trying to keep pace. I actually started laughing while I was swimming watching him and thinking to myself, buddy, we have 138 miles to go after this, relax and enjoy it. Finally he got to close and caught an elbow from me on one of my recovery strokes and disappeared. I ran out of the water and the clock read 1:03, I was pretty happy with that. I had expected between 1:05 and 1:10. The wetsuit strippers were great and I was off to T1. On the way Melinda popped up from out of nowhere and screamed to me that I was doing great, she seemed to pop up everywhere during the day! I think I also saw Kim and Dave as well during that transition.

Coming out of the swim!


The first transition is kind of long because you have to run about a ¼ mile to the transition area. I jogged down, grabbed my bag and headed into the changing tent. I took my time and made sure that I had everything on that I needed, threw the wetsuit back in the bag and headed out to get my bike. That was another long haul as I had to run the entire length of the field just to get to my bike. I grabbed my bike, started the timer, crossed the timing mat, mounted up and was off.

The Bike

I knew what to expect on the bike, we had come to ride the course a month before. I had always been warned by Coach Brian and a few other people that have done Lake Placid to not get caught up in racing out the first 8 miles. I feel like I did a pretty good job of  listening to that advice as everyone passed me. I think I may have passed only one person  and it took probably half a mile to do it. Funny thing is he said to me “It’s tough isn’t? Letting them go”. He was right, it was hard to watch all those people go by because I knew that I could keep up with many of them. I just kept telling myself to relax, enjoy the day, go easy and finish. Finally made it to the big 6 mile descent into Keene. This really highlighted my lack of skills as a cyclist as I was all over the brakes. Watching riders passing me at 40, 50 and probably up to 60 mph, I topped out at 33 and it probably wasn’t on this part of the course. My biggest problem was the Zipp 808s I had on were catching wind and making me pretty nervous. I wish I had more time in the saddle with those on, during windy days.  Also wish that I had went out and found some big hills in NH to practice descending as there is nothing here in MA that remotely compares to those descents into Keene.

I did make it to the bottom unscathed though so that was good, because I saw at least one rider who didn’t. Headed out to Ausable, NY for the out and back part of the course and average around 18mph to the 30 mile marker and was around 18.3 before starting the climb to Wilmington. I saw Julie both times on the turn around but never saw Janet who was in front of her. I guess I could have been rolling through one of the water stop and missed her. Like the first climb I just took my time and spun up the hill, never really pushing myself too hard. I just kept thinking in the back of my head that I have a
marathon to run and I want to run not walk. The head wind in the High Falls Gorge area was pretty good, but I kept aero pretty well and just kept going. Finally got to the Cherries and Bears. We had taken a ride on the this part of the loop a couple days before so I had it pretty much memorized at this point. Power past a few people heading up Papa bear as there was a big crowd and I felt pretty good. It was a lot of fun riding through town.  Coming through Special needs for the bike, Melinda once again popped out of nowhere to yell to me. It was fun seeing everyone while I was out on the course. After seeing Melinda I saw Kim and Dave on the back side of the Adirondack Inn and then when I came around to the front I saw “Jules Crew”, wow can Heidi scream!

Average speed for the first loop was 16.5, I had slowed down more than I wanted to but it really didn’t bother me, not sure why because at other races it would have. I was enjoying the day and having fun on the ride and since it was my first Ironman, maybe it was just about getting to the run this time.

Then it was off for the second loop. For me the second loop was very much like the first. Planning for the race I had thought in my head that I would push hard on the second loop if I was feeling good. Well, at the start of the second loop I was feeling pretty good. I had followed my plan of taking a Gel  on the bottom part of every hour and a Stinger Waffle on the top of every hour, so I knew I was getting my nutrition. I was also drinking a lot of Ironman Perform. I think on the first loop I went through 4 bottles. I went through my Speedfil one of my reserve bottles and one from the race course. I purposely held back the other of my reserve bottles because I had put 2 salt sticks in each bottle I prepared and I
wanted to make sure I took some in on the second half of the course.

When I finally made it to the Ausable turn around again I was feeling like I didn’t want to eat anymore. I was a little worried about that. I felt like if I forced myself to eat something I would get sick, so I took a little bit of Gel from my flask and just continue to drink as much as possible. I have always found that hydration is what lets me down in the past
and I was determined not to let it happen this time. So every water stop on the bike I would grab an Ironman Perform and re-fill my tank. The great thing about this was that it was always cold and just tasted great because it was getting a little warm on the second loop. For about 2 hours I didn’t have any solid food, I did have a few more salt sticks from my dispenser to make sure I didn’t cramp and that I was retaining at least some of the fluids I was drinking. I stood up for a few of the small rollers before you get to the Cherries and Bears to get my legs ready to run. The first time I did that my hamstrings felt
really tight, but they loosened up quick and the next few rollers I stood to go over I was fine. I remember Janet warning me that her Quads killed her last year because she didn’t get out of the saddle so I kept that in mind. Something else off the check list that I remembered to do.

Finally just before I came back to the Cherries and Bears I had another Stinger Waffle and my stomach seemed fine and I continued to sip on the Ironman Perform the rest of the way. Surprisingly there were still people on Papa Bear yelling for everyone coming up the hill and that gave me a boost of energy to go up those final hills. My legs felt strong going up the hills, but on the flats I felt like I couldn’t maintain speed in the second half for
long periods, not sure what that was about. Overall I lost a little more time on the bike and end up at 16.3 mph. That is by far the slowest I have ever gone on my bike. Instead of dwelling on it I just put it out of my mind and moved on, can’t change the past and to be honest, I’m not sure that I would change my bike ride. Yes, it was slow, but I felt comfortable the entire ride and my legs never hurt on any climb. I guess that means I went too easy on the bike, but again, I was worried about the Marathon, something I had never done before. Coming through town I saw all of our group’s supporters again. They were great, yelling out encouragement and cheering us all on.


When I finally got off the bike for the second transition my legs were feeling pretty good and I took my time and walked to get my run transition bag and headed for the changing tent. I sat down in the changing tent and my head was feeling pretty hot like I was over heating and my arms were red because I forgot to put on sunscreen. I changed as fast as I could into my run shorts and shirt, smeared some Glide on so I wouldn’t chafe and be sore on the run. Threw my bike stuff in the bag and started to head out of the tent. Hey! Wait! Where is my watch? I looked down by where I was sitting and spotted, threw it on and was on the way out of the tent again. This time I stopped and had the sunscreen guy smear some all over my arms and neck. Gotta love the support you get at an Ironman, I didn’t even have to get my hands all slimy! Off to run!

The Run

This is what I had been thinking about most of the day. Especially  after the debacle at Patriot where I was barely able to run because I had  dehydrated myself on the ride try to get a fast bike split and not carrying  enough water. I started to jog down the street, heard the family yell and  looked over, gave them a smile/wave and headed down the road out of town.  As I headed down the street I was thinking, “Hey  my legs feel  pretty good!”. My Quads  were not hurting, my calves felt good.

The only problem I had at this point was my stupid watch GPS  was picking up the satellites! Crap, how am I going to pace myself like this?  Finally about 5 minutes into the run it kicked in and I was starting to get  readings, and the readings were just what I wanted to see. I did 8:50, 8:53 for  the first two miles that it recorded. I quickly slowed myself down a little  bit, I was thinking if I could do 9:30 pace that would be great. Walk each water stop for about a 30 second delay and then run a 9 minute mile to the next  water stop. That first water stop was the most important one though, they  handed me that ice cold sponge that I was able to put under my hat and keep my cool. I continued to squeeze the cold sponges on it the rest of the marathon  and it felt great.

Around mile 4 or 5 I heard someone running right behind me.  They were pacing off me, and it was starting to bug the crap out of me. The foot falls were loud and they never said anything. Finally I turned and started to talk to the guy and he was actually quite friendly. Turns out he is a marathon runner and usually does around a 3:30 marathon but was hoping to do 4:15-4:20 for this one. I’m thinking in my head, “I’m sticking with you my new best friend Al and you are bringing me in for a 4:15 marathon!” Well, Al was nice to chat with and I ran with him for about the first 10 miles when his wife came out to meet him with some juice and I just kept on going. His best tip for me was to power walk up the steep part of the two hills. I did that and it worked out great, my legs felt good at the top and I was able to get up to speed pretty quickly again.

At around mile 7 I saw Janet on the run heading out to the turn around and about a minute later I saw Julie heading out too. It was good to see them, it meant they had very good bike rides and were having a good race. Where the hell is Coach Brian? Must be dragging an anchor around the course!

As I came up the hill into town to finish up my first loop I saw my family cheering for me. They all had on matching red shirts to support me. It was the first time I realized they had the shirts on. It was pretty cool to see them all.

Coming back on first loop!

I pretty much cruised through the first loop of the run in around 2:05. I was very happy with that and thought if I could keep that pace it would be awesome. My legs felt good and so I kept to my strategy.

As I headed back out I saw Julie coming up the hill into town, she was about 20 minutes behind me. She was having a very good run. As I went back down the hill and through the first water stop I saw Janet coming down around through the water stop. She was also having a very good first half for the marathon.

Finally at around mile 16 I see Brian for the first time. I yell to him and he yells back, good to finally see him and know he is ok. It is such a long out and back on the run that it would seem impossible not to see everyone out there.

At mile 19 though, things got a little bit scary as I started to get a pain in my left leg near my knee. It wasn’t the knee itself, but felt like the tendon on the side of the knee. It was kind of a dull pain that was getting worse. I would only feel it when I was going up the little
rollers. This was not good, I had 7 miles to go and I didn’t want to slow to a walk. I tried changing my stride a little on the uphill part of the rollers and extend my legs a little more and stretch the knee. The pain didn’t go away, but it didn’t get any worse either.

I had been looking for Julie and Janet again after the turn around but this time they were not where they were the first time. This time I didn’t see them until I was almost at mile 21, they were slowing down, but the good news was they were both still running when I saw them and were going to finish with having had a very good Ironman.

The last 5 miles, I kept to my strategy and made it up through town to the short out and back. Where is the damn 25 mile marker?! And where is the damn turn around?! Running along Mirror Lake Dr. I just wanted to get to the turn around, it seemed like it was the longest mile of my life. I see Brian again, not sure how far ahead of me he is from the turn around, but I’m not able to catch him in my final sprint to the finish line. Finally I see mile
marker 25, hey, wait? Isn’t it just a mile back to the stadium? Why am I not turning around? Did they measure this course right? Once I hit that turn around I knew there was less than a mile and my legs felt good except for the little bit of knee pain, which went away once I knew there was under a mile. I started to stretch out the legs and push to the finish. I notice a guy from the local TriFury club, I thought about saying hello, but screw that! I’m almost there, it is time to get this thing done. I’m pretty sure I managed an 8 minute mile for the last mile. The crowd really gives you a rush of energy, running into
the stadium I high fived every kid as I ran around to the finish line.

I didn’t know what my time was going to be as I came into the stadium as I never looked at any of the clocks once I had left the swim. I knew from my bike ride that I wasn’t going to be able to make it under 12 hours, a goal I had stated earlier on this blog. I looked up and it
read 12:26:xx, I was pretty happy with that. I just ran my first marathon in 4:14 and my first Ironman in under 12:30.


Coming to the finish line!

My Journey to become an Ironman had come to an end.

I want to thank everyone that supported me through this journey, especially my family for putting up with me being gone for most of Sunday on long bike rides.

Also want to thank Coach Brian and Janet, who are now 2x Ironman Finishers, for all of their support. They took Julie and I under their wing and guided us through this journey. Sending out training plans for each weekend and creating bike courses and run courses for us to ride. Constantly fixing Julie’s bike, a task that no one would envy! Guiding us around the Ironman course on a training weekend where it never seemed to stop raining. All of their insight and knowledge from doing this event the previous year really made us well prepared so we were able to have a fun day and enjoy our Ironman day. Thank you!!!


The Support Team
Ironman First Timers


Julie, Janet, Zane
Julie, Janet, Brian, Zane
Ironman Lake Placid

The countdown continues….

Wednesday morning we finally headed up to Lake Placid to get this thing started. The 5+ hour drive with 2 kids in the car was not too bad. Although within the first hour of the trip my daughter commented, “This vacation isn’t as fun as I thought it was going to be!”.  She did have the Ferry ride to look forward to going from VT to NY. JP and Mackenzie both liked that and it was a good break. The condo we are staying in is definitely nicer than the one we stayed in when we went to the Kingdom Swim in VT. The kids are happy because there is a bunk bed. The view is pretty nice, we can see Lake Placid and it is just a short walk down a path to the beach. The water is a bit chilly, I hope Mirror Lake is the same.

This morning our Tri group got up and went for a ride on part of the bike course and up the Cherries and Bears. It was a good ride and we did it twice because it was only about 10 miles and we wanted to get an hour ride in. I still think that those hills are not the worst of the bike course. Maybe I will think differently after Sunday, they are end the end of the course so after 108 miles that last 4 might be tough.

Also did check-in this morning. They really have quite an operation going on to check in 2500 athletes. They check Id, have you sign waivers, pass out a packet with your timing chip and various numbers that will be stuck all over me and my bike. They also check your weight in case you show up at the medical tent, which we all hope to avoid. Now I have my official wristband for the rest of the week as well.

Tomorrow morning we are headed to Mirror Lake for a practice swim. Looking forward to getting in the water again.

Ironman Lake Placid

4 days 20 hours….

The journey to Ironman Lake Placid is quickly coming to an end. Many people keep asking me if I’m ready, ready for it to be over. I think that I’m ready. As for ready for it to be over, nope, not ready for it to be over. I’m ready for it to start. I’m very much looking forward to doing the Ironman, well, most of it anyway. I think once I get off the bike I will probably be thinking what the hell was I thinking signing up for this. I’m hoping that feeling does happen until after the first half of the Marathon though.

The other question I get is, “What is your goal? To Finish?”. That one always kind of jars me because I never put much thought into the fact that I might not finish. I look at thinking about not finishing like a golfer standing on a tee with water in front of him. If he is standing over his ball thinking about the water, that’s where it’s going to end up. If I spent time thinking about not finishing I probably wouldn’t. I spend most of my time going over my race plan in my head so that when race day comes I just have to go out, stay focused and execute the plan. I guess it is a possiblity, but it certainly isn’t going to be because I’m not prepared. After swimming over 120 miles, running over 400 and biking nearly 3000 since the beginning of the year I feel that I’ve prepared myself for the day. When you consider that up until this point last year I had biked about 200 miles for the year I think I’ve come a long way.

Anyway, this morning I went out for an easy one hour ride on the bike.

Ironman Lake Placid

5 Days and the taper continues

Did a 2 hour ride on saturday and a 1 hour run on sunday.

We were back in NY visiting family again this weekend so that means I was back up to the Ashokan Reservoir to ride again. It’s really nice riding along 28A up there, not many cars and the views of the mountains and water are great. The course is mostly rolling hills, I think only 2 where you would switch to the small chainring though. Kind of like riding around MA.

The run on sunday was  a pretty flat run along the Dam. Easy pace with negative splits.

Followed up the weekend with a nice easy crossing at Stiles this morning.

Part of me wants to push harder because I feel pretty good but in the back of my mind I keep telling myself to save it for Sunday. I also keep thinking to myself to take easy, don’t get hurt in the last week!

Ironman Lake Placid

9 Days to go

Easy ride today from the pond with Jan, Julie, Mike and Karen. We left Stiles pretty much in the dark. I think I will need to get a light for my bike if we are going to keep these thursday morning rides going. The roads were wet but it had stopped raining and the sun was trying to break through some of the clouds on the horizon. I actually spent almost two hours out riding today, that is what the long ride on the weekend is supposed to be!! Just relaxed on the bike and stayed areo, the weather was really perfect today.

Weight: 162

Ironman Lake Placid

10 Days to go

Single crossing this morning at the pond and a pretty easy pace. Then a short and quick 5 mile run. The run wasn’t that much fun, horse flies are out and I didn’t have my hat! Funny thing, seemed like they were worse on the way out than they were on the way back, maybe I just ran faster and they couldn’t keep up. Yeah, THAT’S what it was! I was so fast they couldn’t keep up. That’s my story and I’m sticking with it.

I have my spare tubular stretching now so if there is a flat I will be able to get the new tire on. After seeing the gigantic hole in Julie’s tire on Sunday I really need to have a spare, maybe two!

Weight: 161.2


Ironman Lake Placid

Last 4 hour ride!

Today was the last of the really long rides. If you consider 4 hours a really long ride. I actually haven’t minded the 4 hour rides. It was when it started to get into the 5 and 6 hour time zone that it felt like work. Today was a great day to be out there, maybe a little warm toward the end of the ride but it was very comfortable for most of it.

I think my nutrition plan is coming together. Today I used Ironman Perform with two Salt tabs in each bottle. During the ride I drank all 4 bottles and had 3 Honey Stinger Waffles. I practiced pulling them out of my back pocket and eating them rather than waiting until we stopped. Hopefully during the Ironman I will be able to do that and not have to stop. I also had 3 shots of EFS Gel during the ride, alternating the Waffle and the Gel every half hour. That should give me plenty of calories during the bike and a few extra for the start of the run. If the weather is bad on race day I may have to stop and get my stuff to eat, but I guess you deal with the conditions you get.

The Ride:

Saturday Run:

Ironman Lake Placid

IMLP #1675

It’s getting closer and closer. Today I was e-mailed the Athlete guide and found my race number in the participant list. Only 16 days away! I’m looking forward to finally doing this race and getting it done! Hope I remember to enjoy it on the day of the race.

Forgot the entry from yesterday. I did a 2.5 mile swim at Stiles with no wetsuit. Water temp is 79 degrees now, going to be warmer tomorrow probably. Followed that with a quick 5 mile run. This morning I went for a ride with Julie, Jan and Karen. It was a fun ride, a little over 30 miles. Didn’t work too hard most of the ride, only on the hills would I push harder.

Ironman Lake Placid

Longest Run Ever

I had never run more than 13.1 miles until today. Training program called for a 3 hour run. I didn’t make it 3 hours and really didn’t have any intention of running that long. I don’t have a fuel belt so I had to run out and back on 1 Gel. I ran out 1 hour and back so that I could stop at the car and get something to drink and another Gel. Having 14 miles done I went back out and ran to the other side of the Dam and back for 19.5 total.

The weather for the run was kind of lousy, started out very warm and humid and then at about mile 6 turned into a thunderstorm and just a down pour for the next 6 miles. After that it was just a steady rain. Glad it is over. Maybe it will be severe thunderstorms on race day, I’ll be ready!