Ironman USA Lake Placid - TriathlonFull Ironman

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Lake Placid, New York
United States
Ironman North America
79F / 26C
Total Time = 10h 46m 37s
Overall Rank = 172/2258
Age Group = M35-39
Age Group Rank = 30/312
Pre-race routine:

Arrived on Wednesday after a long drive which included a State Trooper stopping us to give a ticket. He was stopping triathletes left right and center. Oh well.

Wednesday night I had a nice run.

Thursday was BT get together with James (Tasr) and others. Swam a loop of the course in about 33 minutes. Had a nice dinner with James and his wife and the family.

Friday was another swim in the lake. Swam with James, Bob Stocks, Jenn, Tim Andrus and Paul Fritsche. Fun. Met up with fellow BTer Rummy and his friend as well. Friday evening included the arrival of my parents and the athlete's dinner. Dinner was actually pretty tasty. Event was inspirational, especially the stuff regarding Matt Long the firefighter. Some guy at the dinner had apparenty done 108 IMs... really?
James and I rode for about an hour in the day.

Saturday, I went down with my parents and registered for IMLP 2010. Went to the expo which was fun as well. Laid low for the rest of the day except a brief ride.

Had a difficult night before the race. Tried to go to bed at 9:00pm, but tossed and turned until 2:00am. Finally got about 2.5 hours of sleep.

Got to transition at 5:07am. Got marked and checked the bike. Inflated the tires to 110 psi. Set out my nutrition for the bike.
Event warmup:

Walked over to the swim start area. Sat with Tracie and was a bit nervous.
Started to rain hard... were we in for another LP 2008???
  • 1h 05m 23s
  • 4224 yards
  • 01m 33s / 100 yards

This is the only part of IMLP that I truly hate. I really do. I need a different startegy next year to start... I think I have a better plan.

2 loop swim course. I should correct that. It is a 1.5 swim loop course with the 1st part out just a survival test. I could not get my breathing under control until I rounded the 1st buoy. This was similar to last year. Too many people congested in a small swim start area. Nature of the beast, but easily my least favorite part of this or any other race is the first 1000m of the LP swim start.

Dangerous. My main worry is concussion and an end to your race day, but truthfully it is just unpleasant. I had a friend kiced in the face last year at the start and he was bruised and black over half of his face all race. He lost his goggles early on and swam blind.

Once the 1st half of the 1st loop is over it's a 'little' more like an OWS. I calmed my breathing down and finished the 1st loop in 31 minutes.

2nd loop I had to get my race back. I had to calm down and start breathing easier. Swam it in about 34 minutes which was very smart. Came out of the water refreshed and got the wetsuit off quickly.

It would just suck to lose a race you prepared for so thoroughly to something or someone stupid on the swim. I blame no individual in the swim fiasco that LP is... it's just a numbers game. Dev Paul on ST has a similar opinion on the swim and he finishes 15-20 min faster than me each year.

What would you do differently?:

Need to start in a different location.
Keep the panic level and the breathing more controlled.
Consider IMKY with it's TT start? ;)
Transition 1
  • 05m 48s

Did OK. Forgot to call for my bike so had to get it on my own. Put socks and extra chamois butter on... smart.
  • 5h 27m 13s
  • 112 miles
  • 20.54 mile/hr

I had a very good ride. Yes I did go pretty hard, but that was my strategy this year. I knew the run with my injury and lack of miles was going to make for a tough run, so I pushed the bike hard. I probably have about a 3:30 stand-alone marathon in me so a 4:03 IM marathon means that I did not completely over-cook the bike.

Ride was congested at the start. The Keene descent was not as scary this year because it was not raining cats and dogs. Still there were a number of accidents this year.

Start of the bike was to be a water intake and solid food portion. Ate Powerbar cola blasts and shot blocks. Took the bike ascent out of town steadily. Keene descent was fast... look at the lap splits (I lap every 5 miles automatically). I stayed aero for the vast majority of it and was passed by only 1 rider the entire time. Flying past those expensive bikes reminded me that it is how aggressive you are willing to be and how low you can get your body that determines bike speed here. Aero frames are not as important as the 2 things I just mentioned.

Flatter area out of Keene is fun. I had a great pace. I caught up with James (Tasr) and it was great to see him. I was still having a little PTSD from the swim melee and seeing him calmed me down tremendously. We talked a bit and joked a bit. He looked strong and steady. We climbed out of Jay together and then he moved up on ahead. I eventually caught him just before Hazelton and passed him for good.

Hazelton was a very fast section for me. Wow. Probably the one part I went significantly harder than I should have. Have to learn from this I think.

Climb out of Wilimington 1st time around was stellar. Paced well. Sat up and hydrated and ate well. Was pasing almost everyone with little effort.

Came back into town and saw my family. My Mom (Mary), Dad (Len), Tracie and Megan and Kate. They were so happy to see me... I was even more happy to see them :)

Climb out of town was a bit tougher this time (as it should be), but I felt very strong.

Keene descent was fast, but I was more careful this time down. Just wasn't worth it to crash. The flatter part out of Keene was fast as we had a tailwind. Climb back out of Jay was good.

The 2nd Hazelton loop was a bit fast again for me. There was a guy drafting off me for about 5 min. I finally turned around and nicely asked him if he wanted to pass me. He dropped back.

Climb out of Wilmington was much harder the 2nd time. Wind was blowing strongly down the mountain in our faces. Also was more tired at this stage, but I took it pretty easy here. A draft pack of 6 guys overtook me. I was really tired and part of me wanted to hand on to their group, but I knew that was wrong. I also needed a slower pace at this stage anyway. 10 min. later I saw half of this pack in the penalty tent. Karma :)

Saw the family again in town and was not feeling as perky as the 1st loop. I think they knew I was suffering a bit... but it is an ironman and not a 'fun-a-thon' afetr all isn't it???

Got the bike in to transition and prepared for the run...

L: Time Distance Speed HR
1 00:15:59 5.00 18.8 150
2 00:12:45 5.00 23.5 149
3 00:07:46 5.00 38.6 136
4 00:11:16 5.00 26.6 143
5 00:15:07 5.00 19.8 143
6 00:15:17 5.00 19.6 147
7 00:12:17 5.00 24.4 144
8 00:12:58 5.00 23.1 140
9 00:16:42 5.00 17.9 142
10 00:18:28 5.00 16.2 143
11 00:15:54 5.00 18.9 144
12 00:16:54 5.00 17.7 145
13 00:14:34 5.00 20.6 143
14 00:08:27 5.00 35.4 127
15 00:11:54 5.00 25.2 139
16 00:12:34 5.00 23.9 140
17 00:19:03 5.00 15.7 144
18 00:12:23 5.00 24.2 139
19 00:13:54 5.00 21.6 139
20 00:16:42 5.00 18.0 138
21 00:21:33 5.00 13.9 146
22 00:17:41 5.00 17.0 143
23 00:06:35 1.90 17.3 134

What would you do differently?:

Several issues and areas to improve upon:

1. Pacing was pretty aggressive considering the wind on the 2nd loop. It looks like I dropped off on pace a lot on the 2nd loop, but the wind was blowing down the long Climb out of Wilmington pretty strongly on that 2nd loop. I suspect in most IMs people are a bit too aggressive on the bike, perhaps I was, but certainly not crazy aggressive as my run really wasn't too bad for my level of training.

2. Bike and fit. My bike is a bit small and my fit was too aggressive in my opinion. Being overly aggressive on the bike leads to nutritional issues in my opinion. I will likely have a new bike by next year's race, and will aim to be a little bit less aggressive.

3. Nutrition. My plan is usually to do whatever I want. Drink when thirsty, eat when I want to etc. I felt bloated at the end of the ride and at the start of the run, so I will have to adjust a few things. No electrolyte issues though as I never had leg cramps or the leg 'shutdown' that I did at the end of last years race.

4. I think a big key to this race is actually the Hazelton turnaround. It is an area that people tend to go too fast on. I certainly did. I think that is a great area to slow down a bit and get some good nutrition in. I'm going to think long and hard about this next year.
Transition 2
  • 04m 25s

Changed socks and applied body glide to the feet. Smart.
  • 4h 03m 51s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 09m 19s  min/mile

Tough run. The 2nd loop was VERY hard.
The first loop was not terrible. I felt the main issue (and I was correct) was that it was getting pretty hot and that with the bloated feeling I had that getting more liquid in would be a challenge. No cramps in the legs.

Here is the Raw Data:

1 00:08:14 1.00 08:14 138 147
2 00:08:43 1.00 08:43 139 143
3 00:07:59 1.00 07:59 141 146
4 00:08:24 1.00 08:24 143 150
5 00:08:11 1.00 08:11 143 147
6 00:08:28 1.00 08:28 143 149
7 00:08:24 1.00 08:24 143 151
8 00:08:40 1.00 08:40 140 147
9 00:09:00 1.00 09:00 139 142
10 00:09:10 1.00 09:10 141 148
11 00:09:30 1.00 09:30 138 145
12 00:09:31 1.00 09:31 139 143
13 00:09:41 1.00 09:41 133 138
14 00:10:02 1.00 10:02 127 134
15 00:10:09 1.00 10:09 130 140
16 00:09:36 1.00 09:36 130 137
17 00:09:16 1.00 09:16 137 146
18 00:08:20 1.00 08:20 140 146
19 00:09:26 1.00 09:26 139 147
20 00:09:27 1.00 09:27 137 145
21 00:10:36 1.00 10:36 133 143
22 00:12:35 1.00 12:35 124 140
23 00:11:21 1.00 11:21 129 143
24 00:09:33 1.00 09:33 139 148
25 00:09:52 1.00 09:52 139 146
26 00:08:05 1.00 08:05 147 156
27 00:01:37 0.21 07:52 153 157

I saw Twinracer on the Riverside run portion and he was walking. I encouraged him to run a bit, but he was having cramps. We ran about a mile together and he started walking again.

On the turn around on Riverside run I saw James. We high-fived each other. That was awesome man as I was fading badly. He looked strong and wasn't far behind me. I was happy to see a familiar face.

The run up the hills into town was slow, but minimal walking. I did start walking the aid stations around mile #4. This was smart as it allowed me to get fluids in. NO SOLIDS ON THE RUN FOR ME. It was also a carrot to help me run just 1 more mile and then get a rest so to speak.

Several days before the race I had decided to enter my Janus electronic message. I thought it was 'hardcore'... it said "ACCEPT THE PAIN!". Running by it made me laugh... sort of.

I saw my family on Lake Placid Drive right before run special needs. I did not look good... I felt worse. I barely said much, but I knew I would loop back to them soon.

Did the turnaround at the end of the Lake Placid Drive part and stopped for a minute with my family.


I stopped at LP drive on the way out to the 2nd loop for a minute or two. I was completely ruined. I hurt. I was bloated.I was winded. I was in a very bad place mentally... I wanted nothing more than to quit. Really. I knew that heading off into that 2nd loop would be the most unpleasant 2 hours+ of my athletic? life. I wanted to cry and was a bit just before I saw them, but I did not want to do this in front of my little girls.

I stopped. I kissed each one of them. 1st Tracie. She hugged me. Then my Mom. Then both girls. Then my Dad. They were so happy and positive. I knew I looked like death warmed-over, but they put on a great display of support and positivity. I said "I'm not feeling good at all"... they said "you are doing great".

I said goodbye and started my run out of town. There is no way on God's green earth I would have quit. I have girls to raise and they will not see their Dad as a quitter. Never! Never! Never!

I had to walk the first big uphill and started the process of long aid station walks.

Gatorade with ice. Cocal cola (a lot of this!!!). and some broth...yuck!

It got progressively hotter. At various points I had to walk a bit. Just enough to get my energy back and then I ran. I would never walk if I was ABLE to run. I found I could actually run between 8-9 min/miles between the aid stations.

When I had energy I would yell encouragement at other racers. "Looking good" "Stay strong" etc. Most of them were on the 1st loop and were surpised that I was on the 2nd loop when I talked with them. I could tell I looked bad by their expressions.

Saw James and Bob Stocks on the course. Bob yelled encouragement... I tried but I don't think anything good came out. Sorry Bob.

My 'funny' little inspiration at the elctronic Janus part of the Riverside run seemed a lot less funny this time around. A lot less.
The announcer was saying stuff for the other athletes(Janus messages) like "Great job Dad" or "We love you Mom".
The announcer read my message... "ACCEPT THE PAIN!" Then he said "It really says that... accept the pain".

It was really funny on the 1st loop, again not so much on the 2nd loop. But yes I was accepting the pain wholeheartedy.

At this stage it was on... on like Donkey Kong.
Efffff it all it was going to be a true sufferfest.

Left Achilles was sore. Right Hip Flexor ached. Felt completely finished, winded, bloated and defeated. Pushed on ahead. Walked those aid stations and hydrated as best I could. Really was getting hot out there.

Started to wonder if I would break 11 hours.

Started to wonder what others were thinking of me... my BTer friends, family etc. I did not want to walk, especially for them. So when I could run I did. The uphill by the ski jumps started as a walk and finished as a run. The run got stronger, and the 3rd last chance aid station (just before town I decided to skip on walking and ran hard. I knew I looked terrible, as I saw the glances from the volunteers... it was more of a "you really need fluid" look as opposed to "would you like fluid".

I know my friends and family would never judge me for walking, but *I* wanted to make them proud of me. I wanted to be someone who helps lift up others by example... someone like Bob Stocks. I pushed ahead for all of you... I thought of you... A LOT!!!

Efff it. I ran hard. I ran the last big uphill part strong as I could and was starting to feel the strength of nearing the finish line. I was feeling the strength of getting my race back... ie; that it had not completely come undone in the 2nd loop. I knew I would see my family soon. I knew that God was with me.

Paul F. saw me with 2 miles to go and shuted words of encouragement.

I saw the family at the run up toward Lake Placid drive and waved. Did not stop this time. Then I kicked it into overdrive effort. Ran the last 1.2 miles under 8min/miles. I passed a lot of people at this time, and I realized I was not the only one looking like crap. Passed about 5 people who were on the 2nd loop... nice!

Came into the stadium and a guy was 15 yards behind me... I started to sprint and he did not follow. I raised my hands as I got near the line... but they fell. I raised them again as I crossed. I was completely exhausted. I could not have done anything more.

There is not one single piece of me left on that course... it was all given... ALL!.

The 2nd loop was life-altering...
1. It was awful. An exhaustion and pain that I have never known.
2. It had moments of compassion and love (see my family).
3. It was scary... saw a number of people being taken off the course by ambulance.
4. It was depressing... struggling on Riverside road was tough. Felt I was letting people down.
5. It was Tremendous... the last 3 miles were my comeback from a big struggle.
6. It was the greatness of having the people you love most and love you the most see you in the absolute worst of times and providing support.
7.It was a rawness of exposing myself as weak and pitiful when I stopped with my family. It was the rawness of crying on some parts of the run because I did not want to go on.
8. It was the exhaltation of being able to run under 8min/miles in the last bit and feeling strong.

The volunteer wanted to take me to medical, but I said I was OK. I sat at the snack area and drank cola and tried to eat Pizza. Pizza did not go well, so I stopped that.

I was ruined at the end, but when I saw my family they all hugged me. My Dad took my bike for me, and we walked back to the rental unit.
What would you do differently?:

Proper bike nutrition, pacing are factors in my run performance (the lack thereof).
Lack of good run training beforehand.

Still considering all, a 4:03 IM marathon is pretty good. I am pleased.
Post race
Warm down:

Crossed te finish line and a volunteer helped me. He put his arm around me and held me upright. I did the finisher pic and then went to the snack area. Drank 2 cups of coca-cola and tried pizza... stopped eating pizza. Got my bike and met Tracie. Hugged her.

Met with my family after. Emotional but insanely happy moment for us all.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Injuries, lack of run training. Nutritional issues and hard bike pacing.

Truly this was a max effort run that required everything I had and then some.

Event comments:

I love LP. I am worried about how many people they will let enter next year, but I love it enough to sign-up again and again.

Profile Album

Last updated: 2008-07-21 12:00 AM
01:05:23 | 4224 yards | 01m 33s / 100yards
Age Group: 65/312
Overall: 422/2258
Performance: Average
Course: 2 loops in Mirror Lake
Start type: Wade Plus: Shot
Water temp: 71F / 22C Current: Low
200M Perf. Bad Remainder: Average
Breathing: Below average Drafting: Average
Waves: Navigation:
Time: 05:48
Performance: Average
Cap removal: Helmet on/
Suit off:
Wetsuit stuck? Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
05:27:13 | 112 miles | 20.54 mile/hr
Age Group: 14/312
Overall: 71/2258
Performance: Good
Average HR 142
Wind: Strong
Course: 2 loop course
Road: Smooth  Cadence:
Turns: Average Cornering: Average
Gear changes: Good Hills: Good
Race pace: Hard Drinks: Too much
Time: 04:25
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Racking bike
Shoe and helmet removal
04:03:51 | 26.2 miles | 09m 19s  min/mile
Age Group: 53/312
Overall: 314/2258
Performance: Good
Course: 2 loop course.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
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