Saturday, July 25, 2009

Triathlon Training: Brick Day

It has been over a month since I attempted to do a brick and I was looking forward to it. A brick is a term used during triathlon training when you do two of the three events back-to-back. Today I did a 14 mile Cycle followed immediately by a 3 mile run. The reason this needs to be practiced is that you need to train your body to get used to moving from one event to the next. Also, it give you a chance to practice your transition!

Today I got out of bed around 6:30am and had a whole wheat bagel with peanut butter as soon as I woke up! I wanted to some fuel in me for the upcoming torture my body was about to endure. Next Sunday my Tri starts at 8am so I wanted to start about the same time today so I can get used to it. I ended up starting at 7:45 so I was close enough.

After some stretching I jumped on the bike and hit start on my Garmin. It took me about 5 miles for my legs to feel decent. I should have did a little more stretching and warming up before I started. I will be sure to do that next week. The ride was pretty nice. I stayed in my community so I had to stop and/or slow down numerous times but overall it was a good ride. I did the 14 miles in 48:12. This is about as good as I can do in my community due to all the stopping. I'd actually be happy with this time next week!

I rode into my garage (transition area) and parked the bike, removed my helmet, strapped on my water belt, toweled off, grabbed my iPod and started to run. The total transition only took me 1:15 - I'd be thrilled with this time next week!

Now the difficult part began. My legs felt so goofy. When you are sitting on a bike pedaling for 48 minutes your legs get used to that motion and so does your vascular system. When you start doing a completely different motion with your legs, like running, it takes a little while for your legs to feel right again. The first 1/2 mile was absolutely ridiculous. My legs felt like two two-by-fours attached to my hips. But shortly after that I started to feel better and found a groove - a slow groove - but nonetheless a groove! I ended up finishing the 3 miles in 28 minutes. The part that was concerning for me was the my Average Heart Rate for the run was 171 BPM with a max of 183 BPM. That is extremely high for me, but for some reason I felt fine running the entire time. I actually could have run a little harder but I kept watching my HR during the run and backed off some.

Overall I was happy with the Brick. The last mile was hard because the sun was sitting high above the trees at this point and I was running due East, right into it, and it was HOT! Not just hot, but Africa Hot! I needed to do this Brick just to see where I was physically. You always think you are ready but until you actually but your body through the ringer you really do not know. Now I know because I really wasn't very tired after I was done and I felt good the entire time.

This coming week I am going to train pretty hard up until Thursday. Friday will be a light day and the Saturday will be an off day. If you are considering doing a Tri or just are wondering how the thing even works I am going to write about that also. Clothing, Transition, Check list, Nutrition, etc .... I will cover it all from start to finish!

Tomorrow is a swimming day -- 1000 yards minimum.

Thanks for Reading,



  1. Great prep for next week. That 2x4 feeling is very familiar!!!

    I was reading an article that advised one to stand up and pedal for the last 200 meters or so and also push you heal below the horizontal on the downstroke. Apparently, this helps with getting the blood moving out from being pooled in the thighs and it supposed to help with the run.

  2. Boomer - Gonna have to try that on the bike. I actually have been practicing standing on the pedals just to get used to it. I also have been practicing grabbing the water bottle and drinking while pedaling too!

    That makes sense - probably gets the blood flowing though your entire legs again!