Map of events
Joe’s Diner Logo

Home » Endurance » Triathlons » Ironman » Lake Placid 2011

Ironman Lake Placid 2011

The Friday Before

Ironman Lake Placid Banner

Before going into Lake Placid I setup base at Meadowbrook State Park, and unlike my other Ironmans, quite a few racers camped as well. After my tent was up I headed into town, which had too many people in spandex and compression socks. I once again used my strategy of checking in near the end of Ironman registration for a quick and easy process.

I walked around the Ironman expo on the speed skating track. Quite a few booths were setup, but they did not contain anything new or interesting. I also perused the permanent tourist shops around Lake Placid. Afterwards I visited the Olympic Museum, which documented the city’s hosting the 1932 and 1980 winter games. It contained many artifacts, pictures, and exhibits from those years, and the history of individual sports in the games. The museum dedicated a large section to the 1980 Miracle on Ice, which single handedly led to the downfall of the Soviet Union.

That evening I attended the Ironman welcome dinner, which took place under a huge tent erected on the Lake Placid Horse Show grounds. Mike did a good job emceeing the gig, speaking with or heckling various athletes in the race. Matt Long, a New York firefighter who had a terrible bike accident but came back to complete an Ironman, had a very tragic but inspirational story, and hearing him speak about his path to recovery was moving. On the lighter side, someone presented a mocking top ten list, juxtaposing this long running Ironman in upstate New York with a newly established one in the city.

The Saturday Before

A short run kept my legs loose before I headed back into Lake Placid. I had a pancake breakfast provided by Ironman Ministries, which added the extra nice touch of making M-dot shaped cakes. I then dropped off my bike and gear bags before going for a dip in Mirror Lake. I still remembered how to swim and also discovered first hand what a clear, clean body of water we would use. The cable swim was great, being able to swim straight for long stretches without sighting. I was warned, however, that during the race I probably would not see the cable much, due to the shear number of people in the water.

Banquet Tent

Banquet Tent

I hopped a ride on the afternoon excursion of the Adirondack Scenic Railroad for a trip from Lake Placid to Saranac Lake. It had nice views of the forests and passed many beaver dams and lakes. Besides the spectacular scenery, the sway of a train was always a relaxing, enjoyable ride. So much so that I may have caught a few winks of sleep on the way back.

After the train ride I drove the bike course, to get a better feel for it than Google Earth or an elevation profile could provide. The descent into Keene was extreme in a car, so I could only imagine it on a bike tomorrow. The hill out of Jay was big, but the other climbs, even the long stretch into Lake Placid, seemed rather subtle. The hills were definitely there, just not overtly making themselves known. They will probably be more obvious without a gasoline engine though.

For dinner I ate at the barbeque restaurant just outside my campground at Meadowbrook State Park. This establishment served the most tendered pulled poker I have ever eaten.