Ironman USA Lake Placid - TriathlonFull Ironman

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Lake Placid, New York
United States
Ironman North America
78F / 26C
Total Time = 10h 34m 1s
Overall Rank = 113/2902
Age Group = M25-29
Age Group Rank = 11/180
Pre-race routine:

Drove up with my Mom to LP on Wednesday. Did a short run when I got to the condo and was feeling pretty good. Thursday I got up first thing and did my ride because it was supposed to rain later. After that, I went downtown to check in and also when to the ART tent, which was really nice to take advantage of. I tried to take it as easy as possible before the race, but did end up being pretty busy. I took Saturday completely off and felt pretty good about the race. I knew I had done the training and now it was just time to put it to use.
Event warmup:

Not much of a warm up. I spent most of the time deciding whether to wear my wetsuit or not. I had bought a swim skin over the winter because it was on sale and now I guess I know why. They recommended that everyone have their swim skin approved before the race by the head official. I had gone to Zoot's website the night before and read "USAT and WTC approved for non-wetsuit legal races" in the description of the product so I figured I was all set. However, when I asked the official, he said it wasn't on his list so I couldn't wear it if I wanted to be eligible for the awards. I was pretty shocked and disappointed, but what are you going to do. I just got my bike all ready to go, got body marked, and then headed over to the lake to drop off my bike special needs bag (I actually had a bike special needs bag this year Elliot :).) and then headed to the water.

  • 1h 09m 42s
  • 4224 yards
  • 01m 26s / 100 yards

I got in the water about 15 minutes before the race and stay where I could stand for a while. The water was cold without a wetsuit! Once the pro's went off, I headed over to the start line. I ended up on the left hand side only about 10 feet or so from the cable or "the line"(there is a cable that runs throughout the entire course). I was planning start back a little further because I wasn't wearing my wetsuit, but that is just kinda where I ended up. I did my best to tread water, but it got tougher and tougher as the race got closer as everyone kept cramming in. I got pushed under a few times and it took a lot of work just to stay up.

It was kinda a relief when the gun went off. There was obviously tons of congestion as we got started, but it was a lot better than IMAZ last year because you can actually see in Mirror Lake so you have an idea idea of who is around you. There was a lot of bumping going on, but it wasn't too bad. There were a couple times I really had to get my head up to try to find a lane, but for the most part, I just focused on staying around the line. I ended to the left of the line for the majority of the first loop, which was fine. However, as I got to the end of the first loop, I moved over to the right of it. When I got up to end the first lap, I checked my watch it was right around 35 minutes and I was pretty pumped as I figured it would be more like 37-38. They announced my name as I ran over to start the second lap which was pretty cool.
The second loop was more of the same. There was a lot of congestion, especially because I was staying on the line. However, I was able to do some drafting and it really wasn't bad. I just continued to focus on taking it as easy as I could and kept on thinking about my form.
When I got to the end of the swim and my watch showed sub 1:10, I was pretty happy.
What would you do differently?:

It definitely would have been nice to wear a wetsuit or at least a swim skin, but I'm happy with my swim overall.
Transition 1
  • 04m 58s

There is quite a long run from the water to T1. However, I will admit that it was nice not to have to worry about taking my wetsuit off. I ran into T1 at a pretty good pace and paced quite a few people along the way. The crowd was awesome and it really got the adrenaline going.

I found the row for my gear bags quickly and headed right into the changing tent. I got my gear on pretty quickly and was out of there. I will admit I hate running in bike shoes and really prefer leaving my shoes on my bike. Nonetheless, I got my bike and got the mount line pretty smoothly. There was some congestion there, but I just ran passed it and mounted. You start off going down a hill so its very easy to get up to speed.
What would you do differently?:

Happy to do T1 in under 5 minutes as that was my goal.
  • 5h 38m 18s
  • 112 miles
  • 19.86 mile/hr

When I headed out on the bike, the adrenaline was definitely going. I remember checking my power and hitting 300 watts and feeling like I wasn't even spinning. I knew I needed to settle in and it really made me appreciate racing with a power meter because it force me to settle in much sooner than I would have if I didn't have one.

Once you head out of town, you get to the longest hill section of the course. There were a lot of people out there, but it was so nice to be able to use the entire right side of the road because the shoulders are in brutal shape! I did my best to continue to take it easy, but my legs felt really good and I probably went a little harder than I should have the first time through this section. Definitely not crazy hard by any means, but looking back, I think I could have gone a bit easier. This section seemed to fly by and I was onto my favorite section of the course. Just before the big decent there is an absolutely breath taking view to your right of the mountains with a river running below it. Its just beautiful! The decent was pretty intense. There were still a lot of riders around and you had to be really careful. There was a head wind so my max speed on the day was only a little over 46 according to my Garmin. I was expecting to top 50.

After the decent, there is the flat section that is pretty flat with a couple rollers. During the section, I just focused on keeping my wattage at around 225-230 watts and was successful in doing so. I just stayed in "my box" and made sure I was drinking enough. It was great having my speedfil because I was able to reload on Perform and water very easily. I used my speedfil for Perform and put the water in my cage. The rest of the flat section was relatively uneventful.

When I headed up the Jay ascent, I was still feeling great. I just focused on my keeping my power down and trying to keep my cadence up. This continued through this section and to the add on.

I cruised up the Whiteface section pretty smoothly as well. I didn't realize that there would be tons of people on both sides of the road when we got to the top. It was really cool and I felt like I was in the Tour De France. However, this did get the adrenaline going again and I pushed it a little harder than I should have here, but still stayed relatively disciplined.

The center of town was awesome. There were big crowds there as well. However, I didn't know where my parents were going to be so I kept looking for them and couldn't find them. Finally on the descent right outside of transition, I saw them, which was really nice. I did my first loop in 2:46:03 was about a minute behind what I was hoping for.

The hill section outside of town on lap 2 went pretty well. I again just focused on my power and trying not to over do it. This section flew by again and I was off to the gorgeous view and then the descent. The descent was a little more relaxed this time because there wasn't as many riders around me.

As the flat section went on, fatigue started to set in a bit. My hip flexors started getting tired which I was a little surprised by because this didn't happen much during my long rides this year. However, I'm pretty the no wetsuit swim had something to do with this. Nonetheless, I just kept pushing and doing my best to keep my power steady.

By the time I got the whiteface section of the course, I was beat. I was really looking forward to getting off the bike. I knew that the crowd would be waiting for me at the top so I used that to keep my motivated.

When I headed into town, I was definitely happy to know I was getting off the bike. I kept telling myself that I had some new legs waiting for me when I got off the bike. I took it pretty easy as I cruised through town for the final time on the bike.
What would you do differently?:

It looks like I came out a bit too hard on the first loop. My goal was to average around 225 watts and I ended up at 219 so I definitely didn't put out the same amount of power on the 2nd loop. Nonetheless, my splits were within about 6 minutes of each other which is considered to be pretty good on this course so I'll take it.
Transition 2
  • 01m 39s

Happy with my T2. I didn't realize you could leave your shoes on the bike so I will definitely be doing that next time. My legs didn't like running with my bike shoes on so I took it a little slower than planned.

Grabbed my stuff without a problem and got my shoes switched pretty quickly so T2 was pretty uneventful.
What would you do differently?:

Leave my shoes on the bike
  • 3h 39m 24s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 08m 22s  min/mile

Overall, I'm happy with my run. In my longer races, I've been having some problems with side stitches on my right side so I will admit that they were on my mind as I started my run.

My legs felt great as I headed out for the run. As I told myself, I had new legs and they were ready. However, as I headed out of town, I knew I needed to stay disciplined and not go out too fast, especially with a downhill to start the run.

On the way out of town, I saw my buddy Chad at the aid station he was volunteering at and it was nice to see a familiar face. But sure enough, during miles 3 + 4, the side stitch started coming on. Shit! I was not happy about this to say the least and this is almost exactly where it happened to me at my HIM earlier this year. I just did my best to stay positive and really focused on my breathing although I had been pretty much the whole run. At the next aid station, I took in some coke and walked a little longer than normal, which really seemed to help. It didn't completely go away for a while, but I was able to keep it at bay.

As I headed back into town, I was a little nervous about the hills and hoped they wouldn't reactivate the stitch. However, I just focused on small steps with a high cadence and I got right up both of the big hills with out too much trouble.

When I got to the aid station at the top of the hill, my friend/guy I coach that was volunteering was waiting for me and asked me what I wanted on the way back through. He got me some water and ice and ran with me for a couple seconds which was great.

As I headed out for the second lap, I was feeling really strong. I was definitely getting hot and tired, but stuck to my game plan. I focused on continuing to run from aid station to aid station. At each aid station I would take in some fluids and try to cool down. As the day went on, I also started copying Macca and putting sponges on my chest. I also dropped ice cubes down my back with was nice.

The majority of the second loop was actually relatively uneventful. I did pass one of the athletes I coach that was on her first lap and she said, "How did I let you talk me into this?" and I chuckled and just reminded her of her strategy and to keep on plugging.

Besides that, the miles just kept cruising by. I started passing a lot of people including some people that were a ways ahead of me on the first lap. Everything was good until I got to the last big hill at around mile 24. At this point, going sub 10:30 was pretty much out of the question and I was getting tired so I decided to speed walk up some of the hill. Looking back, it would have been nice if I didn't do this, but of well. After that, I got back to running and it was all smiles.

As I approached the finishing chute, I knew I wanted to take my time and enjoy it. Last year in AZ, I decided to sprint down the chute so before I even got to the finishing chute, I started high-fiving the crowd. I did this all the way until the end. My buddy Chad was down towards the end so I gave him a big high-five and then headed across the finish line.
What would you do differently?:

Pretty happy with my run. I shaved about 18-19 minutes off my marathon time from AZ last year and negative splitted. I'd say that's a pretty good improvement.

I was actually a little disappointed with my cadence and it was low. I am going to work on improving that during my next one.
Post race
Warm down:

Once I crossed the line, I was trashed. I ended up putting my hand around a volunteer and having him help me to the massage tent after I got my picture. The girl I got for my massage was great. She took her time and let me rest on the table for a bit. I was feeling nauseous and I did dry heave a few times which wasn't cool. However, after the massage, I went and got some pizza and coke which helped a lot.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Not wearing a wetsuit definitely slowed me down on the swim quite a bit. I think I would have been around 1:01 or 1:02 if I had my wetsuit.

On the bike, there were a lot of hills and they will definitely slow you down, but I'm going to continue to get stronger on the bike.

Pretty happy with my run, but as mentioned, I need to focus on keeping my cadence up during my IM runs.

Event comments:

I will admit that I think my first IM was a little bit more special than this one. Nonetheless, I improved by over 6 minutes from IMAZ 2010 on a much more challenging course and also didn't wear my wetsuit. However, at the same time, this may have been an even more special day because I got to watch Adam and Nancy, two of the athletes I coach, become Ironmen. I honestly think I get more joy out of seeing my athletes do well than when I do something well.

Overall, it was a great race and I really enjoyed this challenging course.

Profile Album

Last updated: 2010-08-02 12:00 AM
01:09:42 | 4224 yards | 01m 26s / 100yards
Age Group: 0/180
Overall: 0/2902
Performance: Good
Suit: None
Course: 2 counter clockwise loops of a rectangular course
Start type: Deep Water Plus: Shot
Water temp: 77F / 25C Current: Low
200M Perf. Average Remainder: Good
Breathing: Good Drafting: Average
Waves: Navigation: Good
Rounding: Good
Time: 04:58
Performance: Good
Cap removal: Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike: Yes
Jump on bike: No
Getting up to speed:
05:38:18 | 112 miles | 19.86 mile/hr
Age Group: 0/180
Overall: 0/2902
Performance: Average
Avg Hr: 153 Max HR: 177 Avg Power: 219 Loop 1 split: 2:46:03 Loop 2 split: 2:52:15
Wind: Some with gusts
Course: 2 Loop course with a couple sections of solid climbing and one huge descent per loop.
Road: Rough Dry Cadence: 85
Turns: Good Cornering: Good
Gear changes: Good Hills: Average
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Just right
Time: 01:39
Overall: Good
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike Good
Racking bike Good
Shoe and helmet removal
03:39:24 | 26.2 miles | 08m 22s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/180
Overall: 0/2902
Performance: Good
Avg HR: 160 Max HR: 190? Avg Cadence: 83 Mile Splits: First 13: 7:41, 8:09, 8:29, 9:04, 8:23, 8:41, 8:28, 8:36, 8:23, 8:31, 8:31, 8:25, 7:52 2nd 13: 8:07, 8:11, 8:08, 8:31, 8:05, 8:29, 8:28, 8:21, 8:42, 8:24, 9:13, 8:44, 7:40
Course: 2 loop out and back some hills
Keeping cool Below average Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5