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Tri Faster LLCBreakthrough Bricks

Lauren Jensen
Professional Triathlete/Physical Therapist/Coach
Tri Faster LLC

Tri Faster was started by professional triathlete Lauren Jensen and her husband Todd Jensen as a way to offer rookie and veteran triathletes a set of unique clinics and camps along with personal coaching. Our concentration is on our clinics, camps and mobile fitness apps, but some space is available for personalized coaching and one-time skill sessions or consultations. Visit us at trifaster.com to learn more!

ResourceOne of the toughest parts of doing a triathlon is running after cycling. Most triathletes feel like their legs are lead weights, and it is quite the effort to keep putting one foot in front of the other in the early stages of the run. The easiest way to get better at running after cycling is to practice. These challenging workouts are called bricks - you know, bike, run. Ick!.

Over the years Tri Faster has found a few brick workouts that are a bit non traditional yet very effective in boosting your fitness and taking your speed to the next level. These can be challenging but they are extremely effective.

Short Course bricks (for sprint and Olympic distance triathletes):
Instead of doing a typical brick of a longish bike followed by an easy or moderate run, short course athletes benefit more from doing transition intervals. This workout is best done with a small group of athletes of similar ability.

The idea is to do a good warm-up then perform 3-4 repeats of a short run/bike/run sequence. For example: run a quarter mile close to all out, transition the bike, ride ~2 miles also close to all out, then run a half mile fast off the bike. This workout tops off your high end speed cycling and running and pushes up your lactate threshold. It also gives you a chance to practice your transitions when your heart rate is high, much like when you are racing. This workout can be so tough that most athletes who plan to do four reps, usually stop after three.

Long course bricks (for 70.3 and Ironman athletes)
The staple of the long course athletes training plan seems to be long rides followed by a few miles of running. However, there is a another type of workout (the sandwich workout) that offers variety and an opportunity to keep your average speed higher all day long.

A sample of a triple decker sandwich would be to cycle 25 miles at a an easy effort/ run 4 miles at an easy effort/ cycle 20 miles at a moderate effort/ run 3 miles at a moderate effort/ cycle 15 miles at an up tempo effort/ run 2 miles at an up tempo effort. These workouts are fun and challenging. They also can help you learn how to pace yourself and finish a long workout feeling strong instead of fading as the day goes on.

Try to include a brick workout each week you are not racing. Mix things up and have fun with it since you can create an endless possibility of brick workouts to keep your training challenging and fun.

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