5 Unique Ways to Get in a Brick

Our muscles need to learn how to function in an unnatural situation—that's why brick training is so important.

Despite the fact that, as triathletes, we do most of our workouts in single-sport mode, there are actually very few instances where we just swim, just bike, or just run while racing. The vast majority of the time, we’re combining all three, in succession, and our muscles need to learn how to function in that unnatural situation. This is why brick training is so important. There are several ways complete a brick workout. Try one of the five below—all of them can be completed in an hour or less!

Hour Of Power Triathlon Brick Workout

This brick workout comes from coach Mike Ricci. He says this workout makes for a great sprint race simulation. “Your legs will be absolutely smoked on the run, just like in the race,” Ricci says. “Do this for 4–5 weeks leading up to your race and it will benefit you a ton.”
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Brick and Transition Practice

This one comes from coach Andreas Kuetsch. “The high intensity is particularly suitable for short distances where the running speed is very high in the beginning of the run leg,” says Keutsch.

Because of the quick pace and constant changes in this workout, Keutsch cautions to be aware of your surroundings—especially traffic. This workout could also be done at a track with a bike trainer, or indoors with a stationary bike or trainer and a treadmill.
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Pyramid of Bricks

This workout is incredibly valuable because it teaches your muscles how to move from a seating, pedaling position—often in the aerobars—using one set of muscles, to an upright, weight-bearing position—where form matters as much as pure power. Not only do you need to use different muscles, but you need to figure out how to do that quickly and do it well. If your form falls apart, no matter how strong you are, you’ll suffer in the final leg of your already long day on the road or trail.
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Brick-Build Bike/Run Quad-Burner

This workout focuses on creating the strength necessary to have a fast bike leg, run well off, and still have the power to push through the late stages of a long-course race or quickly attack any climbs on a short-course run. While your aerobic system will obviously be taxed, focus more on pedaling in strong, complete circles on the bike and maintaining excellent run form—leaning forward from your torso, pushing off from your forefoot, and keeping your posture in line. The efforts shouldn’t be so hard that your form breaks down on either the bike or run until the very end; if it is breaking down, back off the intensity.
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Strength/Fartlek Brick

This workout comes from coach Christina Enger. Since Enger finds that many athletes tend to skip their important core training once the mileage begins to climb, she recommends this core/fartlek brick that incorporates strength training into the beginning of the workout. With a fatigued core and leg muscles from the pre-set, athletes should focus on their form while doing the main set—the urge to fall back to poor running mechanics will be similar to running out of T2 on race day.
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A Tough Indoor Brick

This workout comes from coach Gareth Thomas. This difficult session works on how to adapt to the physical changes from biking to running as well as the technical aspect of transition work. Particularly focus on maintaining good running form during the first minute of the run interval and pushing through the final 30 seconds. Maintaining proper cadence during this workout is also key.
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