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Using ENGO to Unlock Brick Workouts

By: Rob Klingensmith

Triathlon

How ENGO Unlocks Brick Workouts

The bike-run brick workout has been a triathlete’s training staple since the advent of the sport.  Its purpose is to improve overall performance by familiarizing you with the unnatural sensations (and initial discomfort) of running off the bike. 

The classic brick combines back-to-back efforts of cycling and running.   

 

Benefits of Bricks

A brick workout replicates the second transition (T2) of a triathlon.  Practicing your shift from cycling to running will reduce your time spent in T2, giving you some “free speed.”

 

Less obvious, triathlon is a strength-based sport. Bricks build durability, teaching us how to adapt our stride and pace, and helping us maintain good technique while fatigued.  

 

Brick workouts also build mental toughness.  No matter who you are, running immediately after a long bike ride is uncomfortable!  Your legs feel like…well… like bricks as blood flow is redistributed and muscles unused during the bike are reawakened and activated for the run.

 

A Better Brick

If new to triathlon, your weekly brick might simply be a 1-hour ride followed by a 15-minute run.  However, if you have a few races under your belt and are intent on getting faster, then you’ll benefit from brick workouts with more complexity.

 

In the following example of a more advanced brick workout, you’ll notice a run-bike-run format that includes numerous efforts at IRONMAN 70.3 intensities:  

 

Segment

Distance/Duration

Detail

Run

5 km

Goal race pace (hi Z2)

Bike

2 hours

15 min: lo Z2


Repeat 2x:

   15 min: lo Z2

   15 min: hi Z2

   15 min: lo Z3


15 min: Z2

Run

5 km

Goal race pace (hi Z2/lo Z3)

 

The run segments should not feel “all out”; the goal is to mimic your projected race pace and build efficiency when fatigued.  

 

The bike segment is ideally suited for triathletes who use a power meter, but you can also manage the intensity blocks according to heartrate or RPE.

 

Key to Brick Success

The secret to getting the most benefit from variable speed workouts like this is the obsessive management of pace.  

 

You’ll obtain optimal training adaptations by feathering your intensities as prescribed.  Going harder than instructed will affect different energy systems, which is not the purpose of this session.  In this workout, we want to familiarize you with brief segments of race-like efforts that you can call upon during your event.

 

The ENGO Advantage

Before the advent of ENGO’s near-eye display technology, managing workouts like this was a nightmare.  

 

Now, when wearing ENGO Eyewear, your power numbers and interval splits are projected into your field of view for real-time awareness of performance, at a glance, allowing you to focus on your effort, your aero position, and what’s ahead of you on the road.

 

For time-crunched triathletes intent on wringing the most value from their limited training time, ENGO Eyewear is a gamechanger.

 

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