2013 Lake Placid Race Report: Joe Manning

150 150 Coach P


I travel 3 or 4 days per week for work and unfortunately the week leading up to Lake Placid was no exception.  I had meetings Monday in Denver, then Tuesday in Orlando, and I was planning fly to Albany Wednesday, link up with the family and drive to LP on Thursday morning.  I arrived at MCO on Monday night around 11:30 only to find that SWA had lost my bags (on the direct flight from DEN???) with all of my tri gear in them and my suit for the mtg Tuesday morning.  My only thought was, “This is the last test right? I get through this and it’s clear sailing to the finish line right?”  Luckily my stuff arrived the next morning. . all was good.

Flash forward to Thursday.  Arrived at LP, checked into our house (right by the run turn on the lake, totally amazing spot), got checked in, grabbed the bike, and headed back to the house to make sure I had everything.

I did a quick ride from town down to Keene to check out the descent with the race wheels on, and then back to the house to grab my parents and hit the Team Dinner.  The rest of my family arrived Friday, (two sisters with their husbands and kids. . .it was a racecation/familyreunion).  I hit the 4 Keys talk, did some shopping,  and called it a day.  Saturday I tried to keep it low key and spent most of the day around the house and got to bed around 9:30pm


3:30am Wake-up.  Breakfast was 3.5 cups of apple sauce, one scoop of protein powder, white bread with honey, salt cap, banana, and a bottle of Perform.  I slammed all of this down as quickly as possible and then got all of my gear together.  My entire family said they wanted to get up with me so I slapped a little Ozzy on the iPod, cranked Ironman® on the stereo, and got the rest of the house up.

We walked the mile or so down Mirror Lake Drive to the Oval.  My wife and girls came with me to body marking and the rest of my family staked out a spot near the swim start.  I was in and out of transition pretty quickly.  I pumped up my tires, loaded my bottles, checked my bags one last time and headed to the start.  I’m not a big talker prior to the race so I just listened to the iPod and took a little nap with my youngest till it was time to suit up.

 Joe Manning rests up with his little one before Lake Placid 2013

SWIM (1:06:55)

It seems as if I have one speed for an open water swim, regardless of course length conditions, etc.  I’m 1:06 in an IM, :33 in a HIM, you get the idea.  RnP suggested I seed myself with the <1hr folks since this was LP and everyone swims faster.  I was happy to be able to pee in the practice area before the start and then jumped in at the back of the <1hr folks.  My plan was to swim the buoy line the entire race.  You think I would have learned after running into/under the first couple of buoys, but it took me till the second lap to stop running into/under them.  I also had a lot more contact throughout the race than I expected, particularly from this huge dude who could not swim a straight line to save his a$$ and continually weaved across the buoy line.  Maybe it was the buoys or trying to fight for the line, but 1:06 again.

T1 (5:35)

Unlike my last IM I remembered to get my wetsuit off my butt before I laid down for the wetsuit strippers.  The wetsuit came off without a hitch and it was off on the long run to the oval.  The crowd was already pretty amazing and I felt really good.  I wasn’t sure if I wanted arm warmers or a vest, but I decided to just grab my spring riding gloves, leave the rest and head out to my bike.  I was a little frustrated as I went to get my bike, as it wasn’t clear if they had it out and farther down the line for me or if they hadn’t gotten it out of the rack yet.  They hadn’t and I needed to run back to grab it.  No issues at the mount line.

BIKE (5:45:50)

My target power for the bike was 223w with a hard cap at 245.  I knew from the camp and my RR’s that I was looking a little less than six hours.  The initial descent out of T1 wasn’t too squirrelly given the wet conditions.  As I came out onto 73 I needed to take my glasses off, as they were totally fogged.  Apparently I was not holding my line too well as some guy informed that I was “all over the f’ing road” as he hammered his way past me out of the saddle up the hill after Lisa G’s.  I spent the next several minutes hoping to see him shortly in a ball of shattered carbon fiber and tattered lycra on the descent into Keene.  I reminded myself to get back in my box and not let this douche ruin my day, so I dialed in my number and started on my nutrition plan.

The initial descent wasn’t bad, but I probably took it a little easier than I needed too, but better safe than sorry.  The ride from Keene to Ausable was flat, fast and relatively uneventful.  The draft packs on the out and back to Ausable were pretty big.  I was doing my best to ride legal and stay with my target watts.  Naturally as we made the turn up toward Wilmington things started to thin out.  I got my first visit from JW as we were approaching Whiteface and we road with each other all the way back into town.  The crowds on Papa Bear were great, and I was psyched to see my family after the turn from Northwoods onto Mirror Lake Dr.  The energy coming into town was simply unreal and I felt super strong as I headed into lap two.

JW stopped for special needs and came up on me again as we were climbing out of LP.  We passed Terri Cashmore as well and then started the descent down to Keene for lap two.  I was much more confident with the drier conditions and stayed aero for the majority of the descent.  While I felt pretty good, I was struggling to stay at my target watts on the Ausable out and back.  My heart rate was fine, but my legs just felt a little dead.  I was actually looking forward to the climb and the opportunity to get out of the aerobars for a little bit.  I was excited to see my family again and soak up the energy from the crowd as we came through town.  I was a little concerned about how my legs would feel on the run given how they felt in the last couple of hours on the bike.

Joe Manning's supporters cheer him on during Lake Placid 2013

My nutrition called for 1 Powergel at :10 after the hour, ½ a Cliff bar at :40 after the hour and two bottles of Perform per hour on the bike.   I was pretty much spot on accept for one aid station where I thought I was carrying a full bottle of Perform only to find out after the aid station that it was empty.  I supplemented with water, salt sticks, and Cliff Block till I could pick up an extra bottle at the next aid station.  I peed twice and felt like I really nailed my nutrition.

Joe Manning on the bike, 2013 Ironman® Lake PlacidBIKE DATA (looks like I left some out there):

TSS:  255.6 (Goal: 286)

IF: .667

Norm Power: 212 (Goal: 223)

VI:  1.04

T2 (4:23):

I slipped out of my shoes behind the high school and dismounted without any issues.  My bag felt really heavy as I headed to the tent and I was concerned my shoes were soaked, but then I remembered that my full Fuel Belt was in there.  Volunteers were great helping me get my socks and shoes on.  I grabbed my belts, visor, and glasses and headed for the porta pottie (I was going to pee on Northwoods coming into town, but I figured my family didn’t want a bunch of pictures of me urinating on myself as I passed).  Pretty quick stop and out onto the run course.

RUN (4:07:06)

Joe Manning on the run at Lake Placid 2013All you need is one quick look at my quads to know that I am not a runner.  I’ve given it a lot of thought and there is not one tri or open run that I can say I’ve enjoyed including the HIM and OLY distance races leading up to Lake Placid (actually both of those were miserable, especially the HIM). I was totally expecting dead legs and a miserable 26 miles, but as I headed down the hill out of town I felt AWESOME.  So awesome in fact that my first mile was 8:57 instead of the 9:30 I was supposed to be running.  I almost forgot to take my 30 steps at the first two aid stations.  I took some extra time at the next couple of the aid stations and was right at my target for the next 3 miles.

My run nutrition plan was a Gu every 3 miles and 1-2 cups of perform at each aid station.  For the most part things went according to plan accept for the Deep Woods Off flavored Gu I got out on River Road (the girl must have just put on bug spray, YUM!) and at some point, I think around mile 9, I missed the Gu and spent the rest of the race trying to figure out what my feed schedule should be,  so I just kind of ate randomly when I felt like it.

It was great seeing all of the EN folks out on the course.  JW was a few minutes in front of me, Terri past me just prior to the River Rd turn on lap 1, and Kori wasn’t too far behind me so it felt like the four of us were on the run together.

The first lap seemed to go by pretty quickly and before I knew it I was climbing back into town.  It was great to hear the girl on the bullhorn on Townie hill reminding me of the Four Keys.  My parents were already making their way to the oval and I saw them near special needs where I ditched my now empty fuel belt.  Then I was able to see the rest of my family at the turn around and it felt good to start heading downhill and out of town for lap two.  As I was heading out onto River Road again, my right forearm started to tingle and my right hand was uncontrollably balling up into a fist.  I remembered Jesse at Core Nutrition mentioned bananas can help this so I grabbed one at the next couple of aid stations and added a few salt sticks, but it didn’t seem to help.

Joe Manning crosses the finish line at Lake Placid 2013My primary goal for the run was to not walk (other than at the aid stations) and be able to “race” after mile 18, so I was excited to get there and see what I had left.  As I hit mile 18, there was one guy in my age group who had passed me just before the turn.  I caught him quickly and didn’t see him again till I was headed into the oval.  Around mile 20 my left ITB started to act up pretty severely.  All I could think was “Not now. . .not now.”  I’ve experienced this in the past and it had been completely debilitating and forced me to walk.  I backed off a little bit, tried to vary my stride to manage, and then worked on pushing till I felt like the pain might get out of control.  This was the cycle I was in till I got back to Townie hill.

As I approached the hills going into town again I was doing my best to focus on my form, keep my cadence up, and manage the pain in my knee.  RnP were a welcome sight out in front of Lisa G’s.  Coach P had some advice for me, but honestly I didn’t catch it.  Coach R lean in and said “Put your head down, don’t think, and get up the hill!” Must be the ex-Army scout in me, but that’s what I needed.  I thought “Roger!” in my head, but couldn’t get it out, put my head down, locked in on the yellow line and didn’t look up till I was in front of the Pub.

I heard Coach Rich’s voice in my head as I passed special needs, “The faster you get it over with the faster the pain stops” and that’s all I needed.  I walked during the last 2 miles of St. George and honestly felt ashamed of that for the past three years. . .no way that was happening here.  I did all I could to crush myself over the last two miles and put an exclamation point on this race.

As I entered the Oval I got a look at the race clock and saw 11:08.  In my head I thought, “maybe that’s still the pro time” so I continued to push all the way around hoping I’d get in under 11:00.  Of course it wasn’t the pro time and my only regret is not taking a little more time to recognize my family as I approached the finish, although I managed to high-five my Dad on the way by.

Hands down my most complete race.  No regrets, and no shame in this performance. I left it all out there and I’m very proud of my 11:09:49. . .a 1hr 9min PR over IMSG!


Split Name


Split Time

Race Time


3 mi

3 mi




8.2 mi

5.2 mi




12 mi

3.8 mi




16.1 mi

4.1 mi




21.3 mi

5.2 mi




25.1 mi

3.8 mi




26.2 mi

1.1 mi





26.2 mi




Keep an eye out later this week for EN’s Coach Podcast and Video with Joe, talking about his experience at Lake Placid 2013!


If you’re interested in learning more about the team, and how we train our athletes to be fitter, faster, and stronger in fewer hours, please join our waitlist.




Coach P

All stories by: Coach P

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.