One-Hour Workout: Brick Sharpening Session

Use this run and bike build to simulate race day and prepare for that last big event of the season. 

This week’s workout comes from Allen Stanfield, a Mississippi-based coach working with Team MPI. Stanfield is a USAT Level I coach who has 20 overall wins to his name. He is also a founder of the Ticking Tri Bombs USAT club.

Stanfield considers this bike/run brick session a great low-stress sharpening session, best used in the leadup to race day. “It delivers specificity while removing the intimidation of high intensity efforts,” he says. “The focus should be on maintaining form and replicating efforts throughout both sessions. They will increase efficiency and confidence when executed properly, but if form cannot be maintained at prescribed efforts, the effort needs to be reduced.”

Stanfield says a quick transition from bike to run is essential in this workout to best simulate a race day scenario. “Create an area that allows you to simulate the time of a race day transition,” he says.

Below, Stanfield has broken the workout into different sections based on your race goal distances:


5 minutes easy at 95 RPM +/-5
5 x (30 sec pickup, 30 sec easy)

Pre-Run Bike Session

Sprint/Olympic Race Focused
5 min 9/10, 2 min easy
4 min 9/10, 2 min easy
3 min 9/10, 2 min easy
2 min 9/10, 2 min easy
1 min 9/10
10-minute easy cooldown


Long-Course Focused
5 min low BRO, 2 min easy
4 min low BRO, 2 min easy
3 min low BRO, 2 min easy
2 min low BRO, 2 min easy
1 min low BRO
5-minute easy cooldown

Low BRO – lowest RPM gear possible in cassette (11 or 12) and Big Ring Only (BRO). These are best done on flat terrain or a trainer. RPM should be below 70. Effort level is hard.

Brick Run

Sprint/Olympic Race Focused
Hop off bike, and go:
10 x (30 sec hard, 30 sec easy)
5 min moderate

Hard efforts below open 5k pace; focus on quick transition from bike to run and holding/descending pace while maintaining form.


Long-Course Focused
Hop off bike, and go:
10 minutes @ half-iron effort heart rate
5 min build to open 5k pace

Build into steady pace, and then increase effort to simulate increase in perceived effort and heart rate climb of long-course racing.


5-minute easy jog

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