My first Triathlon
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Ironman USA Lake Placid - TriathlonFull Ironman
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Lake Placid, New York
Ironman North America
65F / 18C
= 13h 13m 53s
Age Group Rank
We got in Wednesday night to have time to get settled, and not feel rushed at all getting everything done. I had a couple of workouts to do, so we would head downtown a coupld of times.
I met KathyG at the swim on Thursday. It was so great to meet her in person finally! Then I was running my 3 miles after that, and I hear "Kellie!?".. and there was Lauren! So cool to meet her to as we wanted to meet before the race. I stood along mirror lake drive chatting with her for a few, and then took off to meet my training partner and Ron back at the car, and they were like, hey heres some more BT'ers! They had been standing there with MissBethy, her husband, Ed and SGuillen. Everyone was super nice and I loved getting to meet some BT'ers!
Friday I met up with Jess quickly at the swim.
(and we would be running into each other many more times during the race
I was fairly nervous, but taking it all in and enjoying the journey. Being surrounded by so many other athletes was pretty cool and inspiring.
on to race morning... got up at 3:30 to eat, and get everyone else up and around to leave at 4:30. Hoped that everything was packed, and then we were off! Geez, quite a bit of stuff to pack up. Got there, checked on my bike, pumped tires etc, and then realized that I was missing my special needs bike back with my extra tires and pit stop in it. Uh oh. House is 20 minutes away so no going back! Finally I thought, maybe I just dropped it somewhere, so I walked back to the gear drop, and there it was under my spot. Phew. So then off to special needs and to the lake. I lost my training partners in this time, and had to get in the water at this point. The plan was to put the two guys beside me so I wouldnt take as much of a beating.
(yeah, that wouldnt have worked anyways
). BUT, there was JESS! So we got to start to together, be nervous together, and lucky her, she got to help me with the wetsuit dance. :
The wetsuit dance is always enough. Haha
1h 11m 37s
01m 51s / 100 meters
I got in the water with Jess, and we swam to the other side of the beach area to stand for a couple minutes and try to avoid the huge mass a bit. With about 5 minutes to go, we moved off the bank to tread water until time to go. Surreal experience waitng with that many people in that little swim start of LP. Turned around and just thought, wow, look at all those people with me, and all those spectators!! Amazing view.
The cannon went off, and Jess and I just looked at each other like.. oh, guess its time! And we were off! And then let the flailing began. We tried to stay off to the outside a bit, but still got jammed up, and beat up a bit. I got pulled under by my ankle a couple of times, got finger nailes in my foot and hand, got hit in the head and it partially took my cap and goggles off, got swam over, arms hooked, etc. I knew I was fast enough to not be in the back, but not in the front, which basically meant at some point Id end up in the mass regardless. I kept swimming for open areas, would get there, and then 20 other people would be there! It was fun though :
The second loop was better, and I ran into Jess a couple more times, one time literally :
) I never pushed, I never felt out of my nice and easy stroke and every other breathing. When I came out around 35 minutes for the first loop, I was happy. Second loop went about the same time, and still kept it super easy and steady. I didnt want to come out of the swim taxed in any way. However on the second loop, I noticed it was pouring. I kept thinking, please stop please stop. I checked the weather so many times the day before and it didnt call for rain until 3 or 4 pm. So in the interest of not packing too many things, I didnt bring tons of extra clothes or rain gear, etc, and thought that could be a problem for me on the bike.
Got out of the swim and grabbed a stripper, that was easy enough and off I go running to transition. People cheering everywhere, it was great heading down to transition!
What would you do differently?:
Nothing at all, I executed that swim exactly as I wanted and never let anyone
) throw me off my slow and steady plan.
I had no clue what to expect here, but I figured there was no way anyone was going to get to my gear bag faster than I would, so I just ran and grabbed my bike gear bag and headed into the tent. Ran in, and stopped. No seats and.. no lights? Im not sure if thats normal, but since there was no sun, and no lights in the tent, that made the T1 process a bit difficult. I finally found a very dark corner, went and sat down, and started to pull out my gear. A volunteer found me and came to help. Together we figured out what was what, and luckily I had packed armwarmers just in case. Then I said, hey do you guys have sunscreen? Finally a lady came over and started to put it on my shoulders, and then said, wow, your a really optimistic person arent you? I said, well, you never know, it COULD stop. They laughed, and applied it for me. Little did I know the weather forcast had changed so dramatically overnight :
FInally I was off, and ran out to get my bike, there it was all ready for me, and I realize that Im already running through a mud pit. I think.. oh boy, this is going to be fun! I make it to the mount line, mount and go to take off, two people crash in front of me into the rail, and then pow! I hear another person blow a tire. Mmmm, hmm... ok. Now Im praying that I make it through this bike course!
6h 56m 26s
What to say about the bike.... it was wet?? As everyone has heard by now :
) It never stopped. I just kept thinking.. remember all that rain and wind you rode in all year that you always complained about? Well, you've done this many times before, so no biggie. My only concern was the Keene decent, and staying warm enough. I did have my arm warmers on, but obviously they too were wet. And I had nothing else if I got cold.
I climbed out of LP with hundreds of others to get to the decent, and couldnt decide to wear or not wear the sunglasses on the decent. I couldnt see well out of them, foggy and rainy, but I knew it would hurt my eyes to not wear them on the decent. And while it was pouring, I was going to let loose on the downhill. I wasnt willing to give up any little time I could gain on the decent since I know Im not that great of a climber. That partially worked. That rain hurt just a bit going that fast for that long downhill! I did have to slow down some for others, and when I couldnt see well through the glasses, but for the most part, I just went for it. Even if I had to stop, it wasnt happening anyways since those brakes didnt quite work well :
) The longggg downhill went fine, but about halfway through Id get cold and start shaking a bit. So I focused really hard at what I was doing here, and it seemed to work out ok.
The first lap went by fast. And I enjoyed it, rain and all! The bear climbs back into LP were so fun! People were out there rain and all, cheering away, and lots of others were lining the whole last hill and were yelling and screaming for us! That got the smiles to come out :
) Got back into LP and people were still everywhere yelling for us. It felt great to go back by everyone and then head out for the second loop!
The second loop went ok, but not as well as the first. As expected. Im not a good climber, and knew from training out there that I would have to be careful not to try too hard when Im not used to so much climbing for where I train at home.
All was well on the course for me though, and while I saw tons of people with flats, a couple mangled bikes, some people got too cold and were waiting for sag to come get them and wrapped up in blankets, tons of tires/tubes/sunglasses/nutrition, etc all over the course, so I would say I got lucky because I got no flats, and only had one mechanical issue on the second loop. I started to climb one of the smaller hills, and noticed my gearing was slipping a bit and making afunny noise. The chain ended up popping off and jamming a little so I had to stop on the climb and get that taken care of. Got it back on and had to start climbing again mid hill. The gearing was still slipping some, and it sounded like my crank arm was clicking again
(they had to re tighten it, again, before I left
). The legs were already feeling it, so that sucked and I started to get cold and then I got a bad attitude. I had officially hit my low spot on the bike. I got fairly upset, and was sick of being cold and wet, and climbing. During this time however, I ran into Lauren. We played cat and mouse through the out and back and the start of the last 10 miles back in. Then she lost me on the climbs, but it had helped me. Starting the climb back in to LP, I saw Kelly, a girl from my tri club. Got a couple encouraging words from her, and that helped to. Then on the last climb in, another girl came up to me, saw me looking pretty sad I assume, and asked me if I was ok. I said yeah, that I just wasnt too happy right now and my legs hurt and I was thinking the marathon was sounding overwhelming. She asked if this was my first, I said yes. She said not to think about it, and that even though my legs were tired, and I didnt feel like running, once I got off the bike and started running, that I would be just fine once I got started running. I decided to change my attitude, and just get done with the bike and then think about getting to the first aid station on the run.
I talked to a couple other people back into town, and started to enjoy myself again.. and then, it was done!
What would you do differently?:
Nothing really. I followed my own plan again of not killing myself on a bike course that Im not necessarily built for, and enjoyed it, and the conditions the weather was throwing at us :
Came to the dismount line, they grabbed my bike, and I took my shoes off and ran to the tent. Holy mud! I was slip sliding, and my feet were caked in mud. I got in, less people this time, and found a volunteer right away and asked her to help. Bless these volunteers!! Mud, sweat, nasty peed on bike shorts/shoes, and no light still :
) She was very helpful, and we got a jug of water and a towel to get my feet cleaned off and get my shoes and socks on. I changed my shorts, and I was off again.
4h 50m 49s
11m 06s min/mile
What seemed overwhelming to think about on the bike, suddenly seemed like fun to me. I slip slide my way back out, and splashed my way back onto the street, saw some of my cheering crew and gave a big smile and wave!
( I know they were relieved that I made it off the bike since that was everyones biggest concern
On the way out of town everyone was cheering for us and lined the street out of town. I cruised along down to the ski jumps and out to the Hazelton out and back. I had brought my Infinit concentrated in a handheld bottle to mix in with my water, but I didnt want any extra weight at all, so I threw it out. Ehhhh, not the best idea ever, but I had my gels and whatnot still. Well, then those fell out of my shorts and hands from just being too soaked. I went to pick them up, bending over not working out well. My legs had felt like they were always on the verge of cramping after the second decent into Keene on the bike, probably just because they got cold, so I let the gels go.
I drank some water and GE on the first couple of miles, then when I got to the Hazelton out and back, about 5 or 6 miles in, I tried some coke, chicken broth, and GE. I dont know why I lost my mind here, but yes, that was all in one aid station. I was hungry. Well, that didnt mix too well. No biggie, still moving fine. I saw Lauren again, chatted with her for a minute, and then saw my two tri club mates that I trained with, and then turned around to go back into town. I decided to walk the two big hills back in. I had ran them when I trained there, but knew that it would take too much out of my legs to run them in the race. So I walked those, back into town, and then I took back off. I saw my family and friends there and was soooo happy to see them!! Their day was so long to out there in that rain, but man, its amazing how a few seconds of seeing people you love cheer for you, can help your attitude!
Back out for the second loop, still amazed that so many people are out there cheering all around that course 11 hours later in the pouring rain. I make it to about mile 15 and tried some more coke to see if my stomach would settle from the little lapse in judgement back at mile 5ish, but it just felt like it bloated. I had mainly been doing a run/walk plan. Started with walking 1 min at the aid stations, then after the 5 mile incident, walked 2 minutes. By now though, I felt like I was going to puke. I didnt feel bad, but it just felt like, well, nothing wanted to stay down. But when I was running, I had a pace that felt good, and I couldnt slow down without it hurting too much. So, I decided to play the rest of the course with running my pace until the stomach hurt bad, walk until it didnt. I think it worked out. About the last 10 miles I couldnt take much more than water in really, so I knew I was on the edge of bonking most of the way back in, but lucky for me, it didnt happen.
With about 8 miles to go, I decided to check my overall time
( i purposely left that off so that I wouldnt focus too much on it for my first one
). I realize, huh, I can hit low 13 hours if I keep a good pace. I had tried so hard not to get stuck on numbers for this race, that I paid no attention! I got excited, and ran until the pukey thing came back. Couldnt puke though, so walked again. I just tried to make the running in between longer. I met two very nice guys on my last 5 miles in. One was so happy go lucky I almost wanted to hit him because I couldnt talk at that point! But I hung with him just for a break from my own mind. Then I met another on the hills back in who was having a rough time himself, so we talked each other up
(and had fun with speedo guy
The last 2ish miles back into LP and to the turn around to the oval was unreal. I knew I was so close. Everyone was still lining the streets and Ive never heard my name so many times. It had been more sprinkling then, and I was thinking maybe Id actually get a more dry finish.. but no go. It started pouring again! I make it to the point where you go right to finish or left for the second loop, and I said HELL YEAH to myself and literally floated to the finish line! It was pouring though and I was half focused on my footing since my legs were a bit tired, and half focused on the people lining the finish. I see the banner and Im splashing through the last 100 meters and I hear my name. YAY!!!! Big bummer though, I kept my head down mostly focusing on my footing instead of smiling at the finish line. BUt I had quite a big smile on the way in though, and I'll never forget the feeling. It truly is great! I was so excited, and so relieved to be done at the same time.
What would you do differently?:
NEVER go in a porta pottie on the last half of the marathon in a IM race? :
) seriously.. wow. War zone in there! I'll flash everyone next time.
On a serious note... dont have a brain lapse and mix too many things at once just because Im hungry
I crossed the line, a catcher got me, put the medal around my neck, gave me a huge smile and I just couldnt stop smiling then. It was real, and I was done. Off to the finishers picture and then they walked me to the food area.
I knew I needed something but I wanted to see Ron and my family so bad first. Finally I hear them, and I head over and give Ron a huge smile and then a hug. THAT was absolutely the best part, seeing them at the end so happy for me after such a long day for all out there. I know I dont show emotion super freely, but I truly had too many emotions going on at that point and almost didnt know what to say or do.
Ate some food and then went back to my family. After about 2 minutes, I was shaking and wanted to pass out. I wanted so badly to wait and see people finish but I could not stay there like that and didnt have proper clothing to change into since I wasnt anticipating that weather. I will definitely go to another IM though, volunteer and spectate, and do my best to be as supportive as everyone was out there to me. Hundreds of people that you dont know calling your name and cheering you on no matter where you are out there is such a help to people.
What limited your ability to perform faster:
Lack of training on the type of course that LP is. And that truly wasnt too big of a deal. More mentally tough on the marathon portion would be nice next time to :
Wow, the volunteers, amazing. The town/crowd support, amazing. I made sure to slap every person and kids hand that got stuck out out while on the run course, and to say thank you to every person that I could pick out that was cheering for me or giving me encouraging words out there. Eventually it turned into I could only mouth thank you when I didnt feel well, but hopefully they saw the effort. I was quite overwhelmed by all the positive people out there! The athletes were great to when you would run into one going about your speed.
While it is a big race, I still felt very taken care of and it still felt personal to me. I dont know if other MDot IM's are the same, but LP was great!
Last updated: 2008-06-24 12:00 AM
01:11:37 | 3862 meters | 01m 51s / 100meters
QR full sleeve
70F / 21C
Run with bike:
Jump on bike:
Getting up to speed:
06:56:26 | 112 miles | 16.14 mile/hr
Riding w/ feet on shoes
Jumping off bike
Running with bike
Shoe and helmet removal
04:50:49 | 26.2 miles | 11m 06s min/mile
out and back twice
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Lots of volunteers?
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5]
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