September 7, 2010


As the big day is now just a couple weeks away, it's time to start the dreaded (but effective) brick workouts. The idea behind brick workouts is simple: to train your body to switch from one sport to another. The most important combo (so I've heard) is the "bike to run", as your legs tend to feel both like jello and lead as you get off the bike and start running. So Sunday evening I set off on my first brick attempt, not quite knowing what to expect. I decided to mimic the race distances to get a base idea of how I might be able to perform come race day (minus the exertion from the swim, of course, which may very well kick my butt). I did an out-an-back ride on the bike trail, going a bit further than I've ever gone on a run and thus getting to see some new territory. Finished 15.2 miles and surpassed my speed goal of 15mph with an average speed of 15.6mph and my fastest mile at 17mph! Came in just under my goal of an hour, and went .3 miles longer than the race distance. I can't help but wonder if going clipless will make me faster... I feel like such a noob riding in my running shoes! On that note - I just bought clipless pedals (what's with the misnomer btw?) and bike shoes, although I don't think I'll be proficient enough to use them for my race : (

Although I wasn't really practicing transitioning, I still wanted to be as fast as possible to really get the feeling of running immediately after riding. So I rolled up at home, brought my bike inside, transferred my Garmin to my wrist and change the sport setting, grabbed my Ipod, a few sips of water, and a couple Shot Bloks and I was off! Holy cow, I was not ready for that sensation! The entire 3 mile run my legs felt like lead. My first thought was how on earth people run a marathon after riding 100+ miles in an Ironman. Crazy. It felt like I was moving at a crawl, but when I looked down at my pace I was quite shocked to see a 9 min pace! Splits were 8:53, 9:03, and 9:20 for a 27:18 finish. The race is a 5k, but I figured this was close enough. I was pretty spent after, so I'm anticipating being wiped out after the race. But this was also a bit of a confidence booster. At least I know I can do 2/3, and back to back!


Now back to good ole running. I've been struggling a bit to follow my schedule for a number of reasons: tri training, work schedule, and dwindling daylight in the evenings. Since I usually work on the weekends, I've found that I have to move my long run around to whatever day I can fit it in, which means the other scheduled runs for the week often have to change. My speedwork/tempos have been virtually nonexistent. I just keep telling myself after the tri I can refocus on running (or just become obsessed with triathlons?). But for now, maybe it's a good thing I'm having to switch things up.

Anyway, I forced myself to get my run in yesterday after work. It was seriously the last thing I wanted to do after a long day at work and I was still a bit tired from my brick the day before. But then I just reminded myself of the phrase, "You'll never regret going for a run, but you may regret not doing it." So without going into the kitchen where the temptation of dinner lay, I changed and was out the door for a 5 mile run. Tried to take it as more of a recovery run, but still finished with a decent overall pace of 10:04. I'm finding lately that it's harder to go as slow as I used to!

Today was a day off so I chose to postpone my run til the evening and sleep in. Headed out the door just as the weather was cooling off and hammered out a longer-than-usual midweek run of 8 miles. Felt pretty good and actually had another sub-10 min paced run, with an average pace of 9:51. Highlights included my first rattlesnake sighting (!!), another deer sighting, and a lovely, cool breeze. Lowlights included having my face peppered with little bugs that come out in swarms along the river in the evening. 'Twas a pretty good run overall.


  1. Awesome. So impressed with your training.

  2. Cool stuff. If you see any more rattlesnakes, take a cell phone photo (or just describe it to me) and I can tell you what species it is, and sometimes its sex.

  3. Great attitude & preseverance! Funny about the pace on the training runs. I tell myself the same thing, that I'll go slower for a recovery run or when it's hotter, and next thing you know I'm pushing the pace again. Ah well, we're out there & listening to what our bodies are telling us, right?. Keep up the good work & best of luck in your 1st Tri-!