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Two Brick Workouts That Will Make You Tough

Posted on 03 July 2014

The triathlon run will always be the make or break part of your race. The key is to manage the pacing and mentally power through to the finish. Another tough area is the transition from swim to bike with shoulder tightness when immediately dropping into the aero bars.Budapest-Hungary-Marathon


These two workouts can be performed inside, but much better if you can do them outside.
I have used these two workouts for many years and the results will compound over time:

Brick Workout 1 – equipment needed (biking gear and jump rope), running shoes

Find a 1/2 mile climb (not too steep but a good climb that will work your legs and lungs) and start with a bike effort around 75-80% target heart rate zone and stay seated the entire way until 300 meters till the top. At this point move up to a harder gear on your cog and stand to the top. The goal is not to sprint but just get comfortable with standing in a bit bigger gear and staying on top of the bike and RPM’s. After completing the climb, lay the bike in the grass (if available) and do 25-50 Hindu squats (your heart rate will climb significantly so keep the pace moderate but not fast and jerking). Then head down the hill spinning very easy, after arriving at the bottom grab a jump rope/ running shoes that you have stashed in your car, bushes, etc. and jump for 2 minutes straight (your calves will be very tight and burning for sure at this point). Repeat this set 2 more times and then do a 4-6 mile trail run immediately following the bike at your specific race distance pace. This workout is not long but will be tough and the combination of exercises will enhance your staying power on the bike and run transition when it’s so tough.

Brick Workout 2 – Bike/Pushups

This workout will simulate the feeling of normal shoulder stiffness so common when transitioning from the swim to the bike (especially when down in the aero position).

Use either a circuit course to make it easy (preferably 5 mile bike course loop). Start with 25-30 pushups depending upon your specific strength level and then immediately and quickly put on your cycling shoes (just like a transition from swim to bike) and start your loop at race pace but keeping it manageable. How many times have you started out the bike on fire and way to fast then falter over the second half of the bike? We all do it! After finishing the bike ride, then jump off the bike and do 25-30 pushups again (do in the grass if available). I recommend doing this set 3 times if possible to start then build up over several weeks (1 time per week) to 6-7 sets. Sometimes it’s difficult to have your bike near your swimming pool and going in and out the pool continuously. This workout is the “dry-land” version of the swim/bike brick workouts and for many much easy to manage logistically with similar benefits.

Have fun with these and if done consistently you will see results come race day.

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