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2013-09-03 8:41 AM
in reply to: crlarner


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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman
I just completed my first at Ironman Louisville. I can honestly recommend it for a couple reasons - 1) the swim start is time trial and not congested if that matters to you; 2) it doesn't sell out until closer to race day so you don't have to commit a year in advance - allows you to train and register close to race date in the event you aren't ready or you get injured in training.

I know it isn't nearly as popular as most other North America IM-branded events. Non-wetsuit swim, fairly challenging bike course and usually very hot and humid. I initially planned to look at full distance in 2014 or 2015 but I had several friends racing IMLOU as their first full this year. They talked me into it. I raced my first 70.3 in May this year. I was very under-trained on the bike and didn't have nutrition dialed in. Once I considered IMLOU, I got a coach who put me on a 12-week plan using that 70.3 base. Plan was very bike heavy and I worked hard on nutrition during training. I rode lots of hills in training and didn't think the Louisville course was as bad as everyone says. The run is flat and has some shade. Again I have nothing to compare it to, but the finish line was incredible. My hotel was less than 2 blocks from finish line so after I finished, I went back to hotel to shower and change then hung out at finish line area for a couple more hours.

If it weren't for Chattanooga getting IM next year, I probably would go back to Louisville for round 2.


2013-09-03 4:38 PM
in reply to: jkintn

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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman
Originally posted by jkintn

I just completed my first at Ironman Louisville. I can honestly recommend it for a couple reasons - 1) the swim start is time trial and not congested if that matters to you; 2) it doesn't sell out until closer to race day so you don't have to commit a year in advance - allows you to train and register close to race date in the event you aren't ready or you get injured in training.

I know it isn't nearly as popular as most other North America IM-branded events. Non-wetsuit swim, fairly challenging bike course and usually very hot and humid. I initially planned to look at full distance in 2014 or 2015 but I had several friends racing IMLOU as their first full this year. They talked me into it. I raced my first 70.3 in May this year. I was very under-trained on the bike and didn't have nutrition dialed in. Once I considered IMLOU, I got a coach who put me on a 12-week plan using that 70.3 base. Plan was very bike heavy and I worked hard on nutrition during training. I rode lots of hills in training and didn't think the Louisville course was as bad as everyone says. The run is flat and has some shade. Again I have nothing to compare it to, but the finish line was incredible. My hotel was less than 2 blocks from finish line so after I finished, I went back to hotel to shower and change then hung out at finish line area for a couple more hours.

If it weren't for Chattanooga getting IM next year, I probably would go back to Louisville for round 2.


just curious, how many tri's had you done before? I am pretty sure I am signing up for IMWI 2014, but have one tri experience!! I'm a strong runner and biker, just need to get the swim going.
2013-09-03 6:29 PM
in reply to: tarmac52

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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman
Thanks for all the input...In some ways the pomp and circumstance and the the brand for some reason are important...140.6 is 140.6 but looking for venues that are fun and exciting....Country music marathon is on my radar and almost signed up a few years ago. Now I just need to get funds together and get registered.
2013-09-03 7:01 PM
in reply to: Lock_N_Load

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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman
Whichever one is the most appealing to you. If money is not an issue, try to make a trip of it (like Aus or NZ), if money is a concern, then go local.
2013-09-03 8:07 PM
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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman
Originally posted by crlarner

Thanks for all the input...In some ways the pomp and circumstance and the the brand for some reason are important...140.6 is 140.6 but looking for venues that are fun and exciting....Country music marathon is on my radar and almost signed up a few years ago. Now I just need to get funds together and get registered.


I'd agree, Chris, that whatever you choose will be special. Local is good, seeing a venue that you always wanted is terrific.

Being from the NE (not MI), I'd also enter a vote for the iconic IMLP. It is second oldest (to KONA in IM branded races-edited to appease the critics
who love to appear on this site...), and the scenery is spectaculiar and fan support is
simply AMAZING. I loved it and will always remember it.

Who don't want a trip to the Adirondacks in upstate NY as part of their life's plan?

good luck with your choice!

Edited by dtoce 2013-09-03 8:27 PM
2013-09-03 8:12 PM
in reply to: dtoce

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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman
Challenge Penticton is way older that IMLP.


2013-09-03 9:02 PM
in reply to: simpsonbo

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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman

Originally posted by simpsonbo Challenge Penticton is way older that IMLP.

The course is but the race is only 10 days old.  Smile

I know you're being flippant.

2013-09-03 9:04 PM
in reply to: dtoce

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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman

Originally posted by dtoce
Originally posted by crlarner Thanks for all the input...In some ways the pomp and circumstance and the the brand for some reason are important...140.6 is 140.6 but looking for venues that are fun and exciting....Country music marathon is on my radar and almost signed up a few years ago. Now I just need to get funds together and get registered.
I'd agree, Chris, that whatever you choose will be special. Local is good, seeing a venue that you always wanted is terrific. Being from the NE (not MI), I'd also enter a vote for the iconic IMLP. It is second oldest (to KONA in IM branded races-edited to appease the critics who love to appear on this site...), and the scenery is spectaculiar and fan support is simply AMAZING. I loved it and will always remember it. Who don't want a trip to the Adirondacks in upstate NY as part of their life's plan? good luck with your choice!

 

You forgot about the price gouging in Lake Placid.  You know... the part about the six night minimum stay for $300/night at the Motel 6 which regularly costs $50/night.

2013-09-04 8:01 AM
in reply to: mgalanter

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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman
Originally posted by mgalanter

Originally posted by jlruhnke personally I kind of want all the pomp and circumstance that goes along with a WTC event for my first 140.6 distance.


Ironman, as a rule, is no bestter organized, or provide more "pomp and circumstance" than the competitors. I would suggest that the Challenge series is far better at that - just come down and watch Challenge Roth so see a feverish crowd. Sure, IM Kona is special, but its not a first IM for most people.

I would suggest that all those people who insist on only doing a WTC race becasue of the "Ironman" brand should stop and have some introspection on why they are pursuing this difficult challenge. Is it becasue something intrinsic is driving you to see where your limits lie and what you can accomplish or is it becasue 'Joe OQ. Public' knows what an ironman is but has never heard of Rev3 and hence will be more impressed with your accomplishment. I will further suggest that one of these is a better reason than the other.



Fair point. But the closest WTC race to me is 300 miles away. Currently, the closest Challenge race is 1600 miles away. For me, proximity to race venue was the biggest factor in choosing my first 140.6.
2013-09-04 9:06 AM
in reply to: GMAN 19030


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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman
Are you saying that the price gouging does not happen at other Ironman events? I would think it would be the same at any Ironman events that have been around for awhile where the hotels/motels know large groups will keep coming back too. Its just the "take advantage of people whenever you can" American way!
2013-09-04 9:14 AM
in reply to: USAFR

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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman
IM Chattanooga because no one has done it yet.


2013-09-04 9:55 AM
in reply to: USAFR

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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman

Originally posted by USAFR Are you saying that the price gouging does not happen at other Ironman events? I would think it would be the same at any Ironman events that have been around for awhile where the hotels/motels know large groups will keep coming back too. Its just the "take advantage of people whenever you can" American way!

Price gouging varies from place to place.  Penticton was the worst I've seen, of course being Canadian dollars everything seemed off anyway.  About $300 a night for a Super 8 a few miles away from the venue; 5 night minimum. 

Both Coeur d'Alene and Lake Placid had expensive lodging but everything else seemed OK.  Tempe had some hotels increase quite a bit near Mill Ave, but a couple miles away in Phoenix or Mesa, near-normal pricing.

2013-09-04 10:14 AM
in reply to: 0

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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman

Originally posted by USAFR Are you saying that the price gouging does not happen at other Ironman events? I would think it would be the same at any Ironman events that have been around for awhile where the hotels/motels know large groups will keep coming back too. Its just the "take advantage of people whenever you can" American way!

Some yes and some no.

For example, hotel prices in resort areas like Whistler, Mont-Tremblant or Tahoe aren't much if any different than normal.  Sure, they're already kind of pricey but they're nice places.  I paid $269/night for a suite with two beds and a full kitchen at the Hilton Whistler Resort and Spa.  Pricey but not crazy pricey considering it's at a 4-Star resort. $269/night doesn't even get you into the Best Western in Lake Placid and that place is a dump.

Same goes for races at or near big cities like IMAZ or IMTX.  Prices aren't any different race week than any other time of the year.

It tends to be the rinky-dink places that really gouge prices.  It's supply and demand and I get that.  The OP was inquiring about which IM to do as his first and there are just better options than paying $300/night for a six day minimum stay at some Local Yokel Motor Inn in Lake Placid, NY.  Lake Placid has history and nostalgia on its side but little else.  Lodging sucks, the road conditions are less than ideal, the lake it too small, the locals aren't supportive, etc.  If WTC introduced this as a new race everyone would be irate for the reasons I mentioned.  It gets a free pass because it's IMLP.

Mont-Tremblant is apparently a much better race (I'll find out next year) in basically the same neck of the woods.

I'm registered for IMCdA next year and I found hotel prices to be gouged there but not on the level of Lake Placid.  Flip side to that is IMFL.  It's cheap to stay there.



Edited by GMAN 19030 2013-09-04 10:16 AM
2013-09-04 3:07 PM
in reply to: crlarner

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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman
Depends on your situation. For me and my wife we chose Coeur d'Alene and it was amazing! Here is why. The race takes place in late June. This was important to us because we have school aged children. The bulk of our training took place while they were in school. Kids got out for summer break, we did our race, then had the rest of the summer to spend real quality time with them. The race itself is 2nd to none, the beauty of the northwest and the superb support/volunteers just make this race very special. The weather in CdA is also perfect this time of year. Usually cool temps in the morning (50ish) with a high of about 70ish. Some day I will go back, I can't wait.
2013-09-04 3:46 PM
in reply to: crlarner

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Subject: RE: Which first Ironman
Lake Placid. It's close enough to drive in a few hours. For me anyway. You didn't offer much in the way of guidelines around recommendations.
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