Saturday, August 14, 2010

Stacking Bricks

Not to be confused with laying pipe…  ;P

This morning’s workout was the most awesomest thing ever!  Rather than doing a straight brick of bike miles and run miles, I broke it into smaller bricks and did them back to back to back.  Here’s what I mean:  I biked 8 miles, then I ran 2 miles, then I biked 8 more miles and ran 2 more miles, then I rode 8 MORE miles and ran a final 2 miles.  It was such a great way to get through the distance!

Some highlights:

  • This workout was super easy mentally because each section was such a short distance.  I kept my mind focused on only the portion I was currently doing rather than the total (which would have been daunting in a regular brick).
  • I was wearing the exact right clothing (Moving Comfort tank top, Terry bike skirt, and MoeBen sleeves for the first round on the bike because it was a little chilly).  Not too hot, not too cold and no chafing = workout bliss.
  • My legs are now TOAST – in that warm, buttery, delicious way that you get from working really hard.  I will be rocking the compression tights all day today.
  • I have literally never finished a run and hopped on my bike – it was a blast!  I loved stretching my legs out and flying on the bike after running.
  • I put on my iPod for the last run and rocked out to my latest guilty pleasure:  Adam Lambert’s “If I Had You.”  What can I say?  I was a teenager in the 80s and have loved boys in makeup since Adam and the Ants.
  • I put some Perpetuem in my Gatorade and felt full of energy for the whole ~2.5 hour workout – yay! – and as a bonus my stomach felt fine the whole time, too.  I have more than my share of GI issues during long runs, so this is encouraging information as I head into marathon mileage.
  • I spent well over half of my bike time in a full tuck!  This is a huge accomplishment for me – the aero bars are still a little intimidating, but the more I practice on them, the easier they get (feel free to roll your eyes and say, “duh.”  I know.)

Some “learning experiences”:

  • My bike speeds were S L O W – ugh!  Pedaling from aero position requires the use of previously ignored muscles.
  • Since this was the first time I’d done stacking bricks, I started out conservatively on the bike…and then apparently stayed there.  Now I know I can push it a little harder and still have something for the runs.
  • Even though I started early (ha, ha!  Not 3:30 early, just a normal early, like 6 o’clock), by the time I made my third loop on the bike, there was lots of traffic and lots of red lights.  I got plenty of unclipping experience today, for sure!  This probably also contributed to my low average bike speeds.
  • It was cool and breezy this morning so I never felt very sweaty.  I still thought I was drinking plenty of fluid, but my post-workout weigh-in showed a number I haven’t seen since 8th grade – oops!  I’m drinking water now, don’t worry.

Break it down:

Bike 7.73 miles @

17.0 mph

Run 2.06 miles @

8:10 pace

Bike 7.74 miles @

17.1 mph

Run 2.06 miles @

8:11 pace

Bike 7.99 miles @

16.6 mph (OUCH!)

Run 2.06 miles @

7:46 pace (Holy smokes!)

TOTAL BIKE:  23.46 miles @

16.9 mph

TOTAL RUN:  6.18 miles @

8:02 pace

I think it’s safe to say that I am thrilled with these numbers.  The average run pace is faster than my 10K PR!  This is definitely a workout format I’ll use again in the future.  Do you have a favorite workout, one that makes you feel like a rock star??


The Green Girl said...

Aw, congratulations on a successful multi-brick workout! Whoo hoo! I'm thrilled to hear the gear worked out perfectly.

RockStarTri said...

Great job!

I always dread hard intervals except when I'm done :)

ajh said...

Sounds like an awesome workout. And there is no tri in my future. I am so not a swimmer, at all! But I love reading about others!

Jon said...

Because you paced the bike conservatively, it loosed up your legs without nuking them = faster running times!

I am at a point right now where I can only run fast off of the bike; otherwise I need about 4 miles of running to warm me up.

Aimee (I Tri To Be Me) said...

Nice job with the bricks! I like how you stacked them and broke them down into smaller sections!

Laura said...

Way to go - you're so fast! Your early morning workout inspired me to do the same today. So nice to get it done and out of the way first thing.

Tortuga_Runner said...

I love this idea, totally trying soon. Great job!

Julie said...

Damn, you are a rock star! I think that your shorter bricks would be something that I could totally handle. I am still searching for the perfect bike:) Reading posts like your's get me excited for running and biking! Awesome job on your mini brick workouts!

Alma F. said...

Nice workout! YOu were/are smokin'!! Very inspiring.

track coach and adorable wife said...

This is such an awesome idea! I am totally stealing it and giving you none of the credit!:)Your times were stellar, too!

Tina @GottaRunNow said...

Waht a great workout! I might try something similar sometime.