This is an excerpt from Bri Tri’s Ironman Lake Placid Journey. At the bottom of the post you can find a link to the rest of his blog. We like to share our users’ journeys as often as possible.
“Sunday morning I woke up a bit groggy. I reached over to my nightstand, fumbling around until I felt the elastic band of my heart rate monitor strap. I squirmed around wrapping the HRM around me without actually sitting up in bed, a task I have become quite proficient at over the last several months. I check my Heart Rate Variability(HRV) every morning. I was curious what HRV reading would be this morning after the 100+ mile bike ride and brick run yesterday. I hit the start button on the Sweetbeat HRV iPhone app and tried to relax as best I could for the next 3 minutes. After the buzzer went off, indicating the test had completed, I was more than shocked to see a reading of 36. Half of the previous days’ reading of 69. Obviously Saturday’s training had taken its toll on me and my body was a bit of stressed. Despite the app telling me to take it easy today, I had a 2:45 long run to do today, so the easy day will have to wait until tomorrow.
As you can see from the graph, my HRV rebounded quite well on Monday after my long run with a value of 76. So I was able to recover from the bike pretty quickly.
I slowly maneuvered out of bed and starting making some instant oatmeal. My thought was to have my smoothie after my run, but then realized that I would not have time when I got back since we had to pack up and head home. So I mixed up the smoothie too, and had a much larger than normal breakfast. I am sure my body appreciated the extra nutrition. While eating breakfast, I noticed the constant flow of runners going back and forth past the end of the driveway on River Road, about 25 yards from our window. It was going to be a busy day on the run course I guess. Next I got my running gear together and set off for my long run. I had no idea how my legs would respond after the full bike.
I set off north (towards Whiteface) on River Rd for the 1.5-2 miles towards the course turnaround point. I started off without my 4-bottle fuel belt. No reason to lug that extra weight if I don’t have to, since I can pick it up on the way back. My legs were a little stiff at first, but by the time I got back to the house they were feeling better. It was very cloudy this morning and a little muggy. Not horrible though and I didn’t have to put sunscreen on which is great. There were a constant flow of runners out and most were all pretty friendly saying hello and good morning. Mostly everyone out was going at a pretty slow, Ironman age-grouper pace, but every so often a younger dude would fly by at a pretty fast clip. There were even some people out walking and a couple ladies doing the run/walk. I knew that cause I heard their little timer go off when I went by and they immediately started running.
When I got back to the house I stopped in for a bathroom stop and grabbed my Fuel Belt. Ughhh…it felt like I strapped a divers weight belt on. The slight grade of the road, heading south, amplified this weight even more. Eventually I settled into a steady rhythm again. I passed a couple people running towards me on my side of the road. I don’t know how people can run with their back to traffic? I felt really good the entire way out to Route 73 by the ski jumps. I was not looking forward to the either of the two hills on the course and the first one started here as I made the right across the steel bridge. It really wasn’t too bad and I continued to run fairly steady up it. Once I crested the hill, the course flattened out again back into town. At Lisa G’s began the big climb up to Main St.
The slog up up to Main St. is a tough one. I took it easy and slowed my pace a bit. A couple younger couples blew by my on the hill at a pretty fast pace. The one couple that was leading decided to just stop running and the other couple behind them almost ran them over. It was pretty funny. The couple that stopped continued running fast and walking the entire rest of my run. I kept leap-frogging them the whole way. It was quite annoying after a while. Why don’t they just run a little slower and keep running?
I made the turnaround at the back side of Mirror Lake and started making my way back to River Road again. Now the sky had really clouded up and was getting dark. It was only a matter of time before the rain started. I was ready for a little refreshing rain now. I continued leap-frogging the stop-and-start couple and took in the beautiful scenery of the mountains surrounding Lake Placid. It is such a beautiful place, which is why I wanted this to be my first Ironman. I think the mountainous scenery is one of those things that will help to really enjoy doing this event and get me through those times that are going to be painful.
My Garmin was reading 15 miles when I approached the house on River Road and I was somewhere around 2:15 at that point. I needed to do 2:45 so the out and back to the course turnaround should fill that in promptly. It is funny how so many times workouts just seem to automagically fit perfectly into the time I need to complete for a workout. Most times I do try to plan them that way either. The rain finally started to fall just as I passed the house. Denise was not back from her outing yet, so I pushed on. I figured she had gone to Henry’s Woods for a trail run. The rain increased more as I continued and by the time I got back to the house it was a steady downpour. 17.3 miles in 2:50. Not bad for a slow, steady run. I think that is a better pace than what I ran my first marathon. Of course I was nursing some IT Band issues during that, but it would be pretty funny if I end up PR-ing my marathon during Ironman. We’ll see.”
To read more about Bri Tri’s Ironman journey at Lake Placid, go to his blog.
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