Ironman Lake Placid (T – 10)

Hi there! Happy Tuesday! Hope you had a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend filled with lots of food, family/friends and fun!  The first part of my weekend was filled with lots of training but thankfully yesterday was a full rest day – something my body AND mind needed desperately.


Double Stroller Run: 43 min / 5.23 mi / 8:17 pace.  Should have been a day off.  Looking back, I should have taken the day off because by the end of the week I was flat out exhausted.  But, I had skipped Sunday’s run and wanted to get a few miles in.  This was my first time with the BOB double stroller.  It was TOUGH.  Definitely a full body / core workout as well as cardio.  I maintained close to 8:30 miles for most of the run until my youngest started crying.  Why do they always wait to get fussy until you are at the furthest possible point from the car?  UGH. So I basically sprinted back to the car.  The last mile threw the splits way off.

double stroller


Swim: 2,800 yards.  I talked about this workout last week.  Glad I made it through.

Bike: 90 min This ride included a warmup and then 8 x 5 long hill climbs (with 3 min active recovery in between each interval) followed by a 15 min cooldown.  Although this was 90 minutes, the time flew by because of the intervals.  I love ’em. Both in running and now biking.  You push much harder than you think possible because you are only doing it for a finite amount of time.  The recovery in between each allows you to recover and push hard again.


Ran: 7 miles / 53:27 / 7:38 pace.  Not an easy run. This run called for 5 x 800m (1/2 mile) repeats at 5k pace with 2:30 active recovery.  My goal was around 3:10.  My splits were: 3:09, 3:05, 3:08, 3:11, 3:06.  I forgot how much harder speed is outside than on the treadmill (even when I use a low incline). Seriously harder.  AND, pacing is more difficult.  With the treadmill, I can set it to the pace and zone out and just move my legs.  Outside is a different ballgame.  I have to concentrate, focus, pay attention to my body and how it feels.  My first repeat was a constant speed up / slow down because I was figuring out what a 3:10 (6:20 pace) felt like outside.  I felt great after the first and started way too fast for the second one (sub 6 pace for first .3) and finished 5 seconds faster than I had planned.  My splits were kind of all over the place – so it’s clear that I definitely need to work on doing more speedwork outside.

run outside


Bike: 90 min.  Steady state ride on the trainer.  Planned on doing this outside but the weather was lousy so I was stuck on the trainer.  This 90 minutes felt MUCH longer than Tuesday’s interval workout.  I focused on maintaining a high RPM (80+) for most of the ride.

Ran: 6 miles / 44:46 / 7:28 pace.  After a few minutes (1/2 miles) of jelly legs, I was able to pick up the pace to sub-8.  It was a progression steady state run and my goal was 3 miles at/around 7.  Three middle miles were 7:15, 7:00, 6:35.


Bike: 45 min.  Workout called for a 2,700 yd swim and 90 min bike.  Little guy had a terrible night sleep (he was up 3x) and I just couldn’t pull myself out of bed at 4:15am.  I managed a short 45 min ride on the trainer.


Bike: 5 hours. This, unfortunately, was done on the trainer.  I am starting to panic that NONE of my rides lately have been outside.  The weather has not cooperated with me for the longer rides.  UGH.  I used the Coach Troy Spinervals DVD for this workout.  It was a LONG five hours.  The first 2-3 hours were okay, but those last few hours were straight torture.  I watched a full iteration and then another 90 minutes of the DVD.  I likely biked somewhere between 80-85 miles.  Lots of climbing and no resting/stopping/coasting made for an exhausting and tough ride.

I’ve gotten quite a number of emails and messages about breastfeeding while training for an Ironman.  I definitely am going to dedicate at least one full post on this topic because I feel that it’s important enough for it’s own post.  On Saturday, I didn’t want to get off the bike to pump but knew that 5 hours was way too long to go without pumping or nursing, so I brought the pump with me and at the 2:15 and 4:30 mark, pumped while on the bike.  I paused the DVDs and just easy pedaled until I finished. It was the first time I did that and was much easier than I anticipated. So I guess that’s the upside of doing a long ride on the trainer!

Run: 6.6 miles / 50 min / 7:36 pace.  I got my first real taste of what my legs will feel like on race day.  It was a slow, uncomfortable, jelly-like first few minutes since it was only a minute or so post-ride.  But once my body got comfortably warmed up (to running), my heart rate got under control and my legs felt strong.  Don’t get me wrong – they were tired.  Really tired.  But they felt strong at the same time.  I was cautious with the pace and kept it around 7:50 – 8:05 for a few miles and then decided to pick it up for the last 2-3 miles.

big cheesy smile


Swim: 1.5 mile time trial. I woke up Sunday mentally and physically tired.  It had been a long week of training (Saturday especially) and the idea of swimming for 2 miles in the pool was daunting.  I forced myself to the pool and began the 2 mile swim, but when I reached about 20 minutes in, I decided to make it into a time trial and see how fast I could swim 1.5 miles instead.  Time: 55:36.  That pace puts me at a 1:30(ish) IM swim time. Definitely NOT fast.  But, a pretty good pace for me, especially considering I hadn’t swam more than 200 yds ever before February.

I came home from the swim and convinced myself to postpone the run.  I felt like I had been away from the boys (all 3 of them) all weekend and wanted to spend some early morning time with them.  Not to mention that it was really windy out (20 mph winds) and I was not enthused about running on the treadmill.  The hours started to tick away.  We spent most of the day outside – doing yardwork, playing with the boys…it was a perfect day.


Hugs =)


New slide!


Except for the fact that I was having this internal struggle ALL day.  I knew I should run – that I would regret it if I didn’t…but I just felt so tired and hungry.  After going back and forth no less than 20x, I finally made the decision at 3:30pm to do the run.

Run: 17.1 miles / 2:17:04 / 8:01 pace.  Surprisingly, it ended up being a phenomenal run.  It was windy, but it had warmed up quite a bit and I loved the feeling of the sun beating on my face, back, arms.  My splits were steady and the miles felt easy….or as “easy” as they could feel the day after a 5-hour bike ride.  I’m finding that I enjoy these runs more than my long runs during marathon training. Maybe because there’s no expectation of pace right now.  Whatever the reason, the last two long runs have been the most enjoyable runs I’ve had in months.

Splits: 8:15, 8:02, 8:09, 8:01, 8:08, 8:07, 8:04, 8:00, 8:09, 8:01, 8:03, 7:59, 8:03, 7:50, 7:58, 8:09, 7:30, 36 sec (6:20 for last .1). 

long run5

So I need some advice:  What sort of fuel and hydration do you use while on the bike?  Two weeks ago I stuck mostly to gels, blasts, and energy blends, but I felt it was too much on my stomach.  This past weekend, I alternated small peanut butter sandwiches with energy blasts and felt better, but my stomach still felt heavy.  I’ve been using water and Nuun, but wonder if I should be drinking something with calories so that I am hydrating AND fueling at the same time.  My stomach feels SO full and heavy after a workout – and I know it’s likely from the two being separate right now.  Do you combine the two? Have any recommendations?

Weekly Totals

  • Swim: 5,300 yards
  • Bike: 8 hr 45 min
  • Run:  5 hr 30 min (43 miles)

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    29 thoughts on “Ironman Lake Placid (T – 10)

    1. This is certainly interesting, You’re really qualified blog writer. I’ve got joined up with a person’s rss and turn right up regarding looking for extra within your great posting. Furthermore, I have provided your site around my web sites

    2. I am training for a half ironman in oct. I have started playing around with fuel and what works, etc.
      I had a 2hr 10min followed by a run. I had a powerbar right before, the ones for before and during workouts. Then used a pack of cytomax chews every 30/45min followed by water. I didn’t have a problem with a heavy stomach, I usually do.
      Anna recently posted..Week 8My Profile

    3. First time reading your blog, love it!! Highly recommend perpetulam for the nutrition on the bike. It’s made by hammer nutrition. All of their products have helped me and are super well designed. Good luck ‘

    4. You are so crazy! I love it. First, I cannot believe you pumped on the bike. That is seriously awesome. Second, I cannot believe you ran 43 miles. You totally push me to not be afraid I’m going to die if I ran 50 miles in a week :) Thanks for posting this. It really helps me realize my body can handle more than I let it. For my little triathlon, I took a combination drink while I was on the bike. It really seemed to help. Maybe you can have a water bottle chaser too, that way you want feel so much heaviness? Just a thought. Hope you have fun this next week!

    5. Wish I could help you on the hydration/fueling part. I know that peanut butter ritz crackers are the thing the my tummy does best with. I feel like gels, gus and electrolyte drinks when taken in large quantities feel heavy on my tummy. Maybe even a homemade oatmeal/bar or bite my be a good alternative? And you’re doing amazing! Keep up the hard work.
      Sarah @RunFarGirl recently posted..A 5K PR and DoubtMy Profile

    6. Wow, Michelle. Another fantastic week in the books! I’m glad you got your rest day in on Monday… you definitely needed it after that week! Putting off a run until later in the day is the worst… I know that pull too well, where you want to enjoy family time, but you’re wondering if/how/when you’ll fit the run in. So glad it went that well for you!
      As for fuel, I’ve never done long bike rides over 2 hours, but it looks like you got some good advice. And of course, everyone is different so experimenting is key. When I was marathon training in the fall, I’d often have a long run and then go teach spin for an hour, and I loved Picky bars for a quick burst of energy before spin. My stomach was happy with it, just a half or so of one.
      Laura @ Mommy Run Fast recently posted..How to Determine the Best foods for your bodyMy Profile

    7. Amazing!….all I can say is amazing!
      I just started using Osmo and like it…..I think it used to be used mainly by cyclists but I found out about it from another runner….worth checking out!

    8. Nice job last week. I am in awe at the paces you are still hitting in your runs. I use EFS sports drink on my rides. It is great on calories and electrolytes. I just ordered the EFS liquid shots and will try this weekend but I have beem using gu chomps but I wanted something easier to eat on the bike. I try to take in 250 calories and hour on the bike.
      Robin recently posted..Where Do Triathletes Live?My Profile

    9. Great job, Michele! I’m always so impressed by you and honestly have no clue how you continue to exercise so amazingly while nursing. I’m really interested to read that post! I’ve been nursing for 18mos now, and around the 7/8mo mark, I’ve really noticed how much my running suffers after a day or two of extra nursing. It’s not fun, but obviously more than worth it for my son!
      Jen recently posted..Memorial Day weekend 2013My Profile

    10. I would say definitely drink something with more calories, like Gatorade or CarboPro…anything with more substance! Nuun just doesn’t have enough of anything (especially sodium) to really refuel you! I tend to stick to mostly liquid calories or cliff blocks…and some type of protein bar too when I can. If I’ve learned one thing during training for IMLP, it’s that nutrition and fueling are super important and you need more fuel than you think you do!
      Kara recently posted..I’m A Real Cyclist NowMy Profile

    11. About on bike fuel, Ultra endurance runner Brian MacKenzie recommends GENr8 Vitargo S2. I know very little about it but this is a guy who takes rookies from 5k to 50k in 12 weeks, no joke. He did the Angles Crest 100 in 6.5 hours of training per week.

      I’d highly recommend reading Tim Ferris’ The 4 Hour Body AFTER you finish your IM. It has some amazing stuff about getting better results in less time but it can mess your head if you’re already committed to a traditional training schedule.

      You’re so inspiring, keep up the good work!

    12. Good job with your training! Don’t worry about being inside. I always figure since its so hard mentally I’m getting a little extra training there!

      I have gone toward more real foods on the bike, while drinking the Gatorade that they will have on the course for simplicity, taking salt tabs, and carrying some water for just in case. Check out Allen Lim’s books (one is the feed zone). I haven’t made many of his recipes but LOVED the sushi rice bars. I get really tired of all the sweetness of gels and sports drinks. Esp after 10+ hrs!
      Joy recently posted..CountdownMy Profile

    13. What a rockstar week you had! Great job pushing yourself out the door for that last run. It’s funny to me how the runs that I never want to do always seem to be the ones that I need the most and feel the best. :)
      catie recently wordsMy Profile

    14. Every week I am more and more impressed and amazed with your dedication and training! Way to go! Can’t wait to read your post about breastfeeding while training for an IM. I wrote two posts last week about breastfeeding & fitness and the first talked about how incredible I think it is that you are training for an IM while still nursing. I was able to return to running pretty quickly but never dreamed of doing an IM while nursing! And way to go pumping on the trainer! I’ve pumped in some pretty interesting and awful places but the trainer was never one of them!
      Nicole @ Work in Sweats Mama recently posted..Weekend in PicturesMy Profile

    15. I’m so impressed with your ability to balance time with the family with training for an IM. You’re doing a great job. And the question about fueling is a great one. I’ve started biking longer with my running injury and find you have to fuel so much more on the bike and you end up feeling full and it’s a bit weighing. I look forward to hearing your thoughts as you progress. Again, amazing job Michele!
      meghan recently posted..A fun and variety filled Memorial Day Weekend!My Profile

    16. That just looks exhausting! All of it!! Especially the 5 hours on the bike trainer, yikes. Every time I read your training week recap I’m impressed and glad you’re doing it not me :)

    17. Hi Michele!

      I think this is the first time I comment, and just want to say I think you are one kick-ass momma and a hell of an inspiration!

      I wanted to suggest a liquid carbohydrate fuel. I used eload Fly for my marathon training and race and really liked it. I mix it with nuun and it’s pretty much tasteless. It’s a Canadian company (I live in Canada) but I’m pretty sure they ship to the States.

      Good luck with all your training and upcoming races!

    18. You are doing awesome with your training, like seriously. My first tri is this weekend and I am going nuts thinking about it, and only 7 weeks until my first half-iron. eeeeeekkkk!

      As for bike fuel, I am still working on that myself. I really need to figure out what I want to use for fuel for 70.3, let me know what you hear from people, would love to compare.
      Laura recently posted..Fun & Necessary WeekendMy Profile

    19. Killer week for you! I really respect that you got yourself out there that late in the day to run the long run…that’s a definite mental battle and you won. Last week definitely had a few days that required the trainer…boo to that so late in the year!

      Good luck figuring out your nutrition. Maybe there are some lighter products with more oomph to them? Like a sports drink w/ some protein?
      misszippy1 recently posted..Who was that triathlete?My Profile

    20. That’s a pretty awesome week of training Michele and so proud of you and your swim time trial!! Yes, you have only been really swimming for a few short months and you’ve made so much progress. I love the picture of you and AJ cuddling on the couch and Ryan’s expression in the double stroller? Amazing. xoxo
      Christine @ Love, Life, Surf recently posted..Always expecting greatMy Profile

    21. I’ve heard good things about using hammer gel and making drink mixtures to get both nutrition and water in at the same time on a bike. Haven’t tried it but it seems to work for some people.

      I used to worry about my long rides being on a trainer too. After reading around and thinking about it, it is a better use of your time — think of all the prep work going into an outdoor ride. TE RoadID, tubes, CO2, gear, nutrition, hydration…not to mention the stoplights, cars, other cyclists, fixing flats, etc. Training indoors will give you a good bang for your buck in terms of time and effort, but try to get outdoors for some of the rides so you “remember” what it’s like to deal with all of that come race day. :)

      You are superwoman! Keep up the awesome work.
      Amara recently posted..Week 14 Ironman Louisville Training: All Great Changes are Preceded by ChaosMy Profile