IRONMAN 70.3 Triathlon: What are Brick Sessions and Why Are They Important?

IRONMAN 70.3 Triathlon: What are Brick Sessions and Why Are They Important?

Brick sessions are an important part of IRONMAN 70.3 training. But what are they, why are they so important, and how can you make them work best for you?

An IRONMAN 70.3 triathlon can be a daunting event to train for. It requires you to complete three disciplines, swimming, biking, and running, in succession. Brick sessions are an essential part of IRONMAN training as they help athletes become comfortable with transitioning between the different sports.

1. What is a Brick Session?

A brick session consists of two or more of the disciplines that make up a triathlon being completed back-to-back in one workout session. For example, a swim-bike brick session would involve swimming followed by cycling; while a bike-run brick would involve cycling followed by running.

While not all brick sessions need to be done at race pace or intensity, it helps to simulate race conditions and give athletes an idea of how their bodies will respond to competing in multiple disciplines for an extended period of time.

2. Why are Brick Sessions Important?

Brick sessions offer several benefits for triathletes beyond getting used to transitioning between the different disciplines. First and foremost, completing back-to-back workouts gives you a better understanding of how your body will respond during an actual race situation. This knowledge can help you adjust your pacing strategy accordingly and ensure that you don’t burn yourself out too early during the race.

Additionally, doing these workouts can help strengthen muscles that may become fatigued from doing multiple activities over long periods of time such as during a marathon run following a long bike ride. Brick sessions can also help build mental toughness, which is invaluable during a triathlon.

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3. Which Brick Sessions Are Best?

In my triathlon training plans, the brick sessions I set the most are bike-to-run sessions. For example, a 1-hour bike ride, followed by a 10-minute run. These workouts are designed to help you get accustomed to the “heavy legs” feeling that you’ll probably experience when you transition from biking to running in a triathlon.

However, as you get nearer to your target event, it’s good to include a few longer bike/run brick sessions too. For example, a two-hour cycle, followed by a one-hour run. These longer brick workouts give you a better idea of what you’ll experience on race day and are a great opportunity to test your race nutrition and equipment. When it’s race day, you’ll feel more confident knowing you practiced long brick sessions in training.

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Phil Mosley (Coach & Founder)
Phil Mosley (Coach & Founder)

Phil is a recognised endurance expert who founded MyProCoach in 2010 to offer smart training plans that still leave quality time for your family, friends & career - complete with highly-rated coach support (he has sold over 40,000 so far). Learn more here!

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