Ironman Lake Placid 2013 – The Workouts

Hiya, friends!  As promised, here’s the first of a few recaps from my trip to Lake Placid this past weekend.


One of my teammates completed the 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike, and 26.2-mile run, and another volunteered and spectated with me.  The three of us made the five-hour drive from New York City to Lake Placid Thursday morning, and we agreed heading up earlier would be better; this was confirmed when my soon-to-be Ironman teammate whizzed through paperwork, packet pick up, weigh in, etc. once we arrived.  More on that in a later post.  Here’s what my workouts looked like:

Thursday – Rest/pack/assemble bike rack.  My teammate who wasn’t racing and I must’ve been quite the sight: two girls sprawled out on a side street trying to put together a bike rack.  We eventually figured it out, though!

Friday – One loop of the swim course (1.2 miles) in Mirror Lake and 50 minutes on the run course.

Oh my gosh.  Words cannot begin to describe how much I loved these workouts.


Want to know why it’s called Mirror Lake?  Because you can always see the bottom.  This swim was the farthest one I’ve officially completed in open water, and I soaked it all in; the calm water, the shining sun, and the breathtaking scenery when I sighted (which wasn’t that often because the buoys are attached to a silver wire that lines the bottom of the lake, so as long as you follow the wire, you’ll stay on course).


Prior to this trip, I knew Lake Placid would be my first Ironman (in about 10 years maybe, ha!), and after the swim, there was no question.

Afterward, I headed out for a 50-minute run on part of the marathon course.  Again, oh my gosh:  running with mountains in the distance and under a clear blue sky—can you ask for anything better?  I probably looked like the biggest goon ever because I couldn’t stop smiling!  Like the swim, it was incredibly therapeutic and reconfirmed my desire to do this race.

Saturday – One loop of the bike course (~56 miles).

This Lake Placid long weekend resulted in two personal distance records:  my longest OWS and my farthest bike ride yet—about 56 miles thanks to one loop of the Ironman bike course. (There are a few lollypop turns, but my teammate and I didn’t do all of them; we guessed our total mileage was in the 50-54 ballpark.)


Going into this ride, my teammate and I decided to do it for fun, so we wouldn’t push the pace, we’d take breaks when needed, etc.


Ride fueled by PowerBar, ha!

We also planned to chalk the course, so we knew we’d be stopping at least four times.


My teammate’s nickname is “Double D” or “DD” for short.


Goofing off, ha!

Although the swim and run tempted me to sign up for the 2014 race, the bike proved to be a reality check.  Overall, it’s the discipline where I have the most room for improvement, and this course cannot be taken lightly—it’s tough, it’s hilly, and the wind can play a huge factor.  For any Ironman race, if you don’t respect the course and the distance, you’ll pay for it, and if you don’t pace the Lake Placid bike portion the right way, then you’ll definitely blow up later.  Even though I enjoyed the ride, it’s safe to say at this point, I’m not ready mentally or physically to make the jump to long-course events, which is totally OK.

Sunday – Rest/volunteer/spectate.

Detailed post to come, but wow, what an incredibly inspiring day!  My teammate finished in 12 hours and 11 minutes, which is an impressive time for his first Ironman and for this course.

Monday – One loop of the swim course with some easy/solid intervals.

I had to get back in the water one last time.  Even though I enjoyed Friday’s swim, this outing meant so much more after seeing the race.  Yeah, Ironman Lake Placid will definitely happen one day.

After watching or volunteering for a race, have you been tempted to sign up?

14 responses to “Ironman Lake Placid 2013 – The Workouts

  1. Sounds like a blast and this definitely makes me want to go see one first hand as well. I wouldn’t doubt for a second that we see a 2014 race recap from you on this one despite you thinking you’re not ready for it yet!

    • I was SO tempted to register, but I know my coaches would kill me–ha! Doing LP is definitely a question of “when,” not “if” for sure. 🙂

  2. How cool was it to be on the course in the calm without it being race day – neato!

    • It was so cool to work out on the course both before and after the race–made me value and appreciate the experience even more. 🙂

  3. I’m glad you had some great workouts!! You can definitely do long distance triathlons, and hey, a 70.3 is middle distance 😉

    Mike and I volunteered at a 100 mile triathlon last year and we’re planning on doing it (though the other location) next year!

  4. I can honestly say if I volunteered for ironman half or full I would not be tempted to sign up LOL. I’m glad you had such a great time and were inspired and I honestly think you would be ready to start training for one if you wanted.

  5. This makes me want to visit Lake Placid so much! I never really swim in open water because the murkiness creeps me out, so this would be a perfect place 🙂

    • OMG, everything about Lake Placid was absolutely beautiful! And Mirror Lake is a perfect location for open-water swimming. You should come with us next time! 🙂

  6. Awesome! I can already tell you’ll sign up for Ironman 2014 🙂
    I always spectate the Ironman in Madison and for about 60 seconds I think ‘maybe I should do that’ and then I snap back to reality!

    • My coaches would totally kill me if I signed up! What if you train for Madison, and I’ll get ready for Placid? 😉

  7. gosh it must have been so cool to be on the course! love this!

    • It was so cool! And I loved working out on the course both before and after the race; I definitely had a greater respect for it after.

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