Tri running

I did the half Ironman UK at the weekend and expected to do fairly well on the run section as I come from a running background.Instead my legs just folded.I ended up shuffling/walking.Does anyone have any advice for training for the run section of a triathlon?


  • I am in awe simon... I am struggling to pluck up the courage to go for this. And whilst I can't give you advice from experience, I have observed that "non-swimmers" ie those who come from a running background use their legs quite a lot on the swim section, using up vital energy stores.

    In my training plan, I am spending as much time in the pool using only my arms.. making sure I can complete double the target distance without the use of my legs, saving them for the cycle (not pushing too much, letting the gears do the work) and then the run.

    I might be talking out of my backside here, but as a theory I think it is quite sound.. I stand prepared to be told otherwise though.

    good luck!
  • Simon,

    Well done on completeing HIMUK, it is a very tough course.

    Running at the end of a tri is always going to be difficult, particualy a half marathon after a 56 mile hilly bike ride. The key is to to practise running off the bike. Try and include at least one brick session a week, building up to around a 3 hour bike followed by a 1 hour run.

    Of course being in better swim/bike shape will also mean that you are in a much better state to run at the end of it. Don't ignore the nutrition side of it as well, you need to be taking onboard a lot of calories to get you through such a race. Ignore this and no matter how good running shape you are in you are not going to be able to perform. Did you have a nutrition strategy worked out for the race?

  • Well done Simon

    I'm only hoping to make the move to middle distance next year.

    Of the races I have done – I have found that I have had my best runs when I have done 1 Brick session a week for a few weeks leading up to the race – when I have left this out of my training – you guessed it – Jelly Legs

  • I too completed HIMUK with a 1:28 half marathon at the end.
    I come from a running background, and until 18 months ago couldn't swim a single stroke front crawl!
    Did HIMUK last year, and Full Ironman in France this June.
    The secret to running in a Tri is to practice running off the bike at least once a week.
    For the Ironman I was cycling for 6 to 6.5 hours (95 to 100 miles), getting off the bike and forcing myself to run for at least 45 mins - sometimes up to 90 mins.
    Doing a half Ironman was like dropping down to sprint distance after the full, but I lost the plot a little on the bike, due to being cold.
    A session that works for me is a 40 mile bike at an average speed of 18mph, (ish)followed by a 10 mile run at 6.75 to 7 min / mile pace - in the last couple of minutes of the bike ride "spin" your legs at a cadence of over 100 rpm to get rid of some of the lactic in the quads, then you'll find the running easier.

    Well done !

  • Paul, brilliant run in the HIMUK !
    I'm form a cycling background, switched to running this time last year, and now Triathlon is tempting me. Managed my first length of front crawl this week, so I'm encouraged that you did the Full Iron Man in 18 months from scratch !

    For what its worth - I've been using a fixed wheel bike to make me keep up a high cadence, and I think it has helped me - rather than just rely on turning big gears as most cyclists do.

    Simon - what gears did you use for the bike ?
  • Well done Simon,
    I'm sorry I can't offer any advice as I'm a novice just about to take part in her first tri and ONLY a fast twitch one at that. On this one I'm only looking at taking part, but if I like it then next year I'll target some more and be a bit more serious about the training. I've only done 2 brick sessions because of the time involved but at least I now know what it will feel like, if nothing else. My one aim is to improve my swimming, which I'm having weekly lessons for. Anyway sorry to ramble, and well done again.
  • Guys,
    Thanks for all the replies.Looks like I'll have to re-think my training strategy before I take on a full IM!Looks like some brick sessions are called for.....ouch

  • As everyone says 'Bricks' are the way to go. But the other good thing about bricks is that they are an excellent way of using your training time. Don't just do bike/runs, do run/bikes or bike/run/bike or any combination you care to think of.
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