Running for triathlon-
Mistakes show up in the run- too much kick in swim, not enough pre race taper, too hard a bike, bad race day and pre race nutrition, temperature problems.
The run is the final judge of planning, preparation,pace. Mess up on those and your run is sunk. It can be the worse feeling in triathlon. ( other than drowning, that’s such a great feeling either)
There are no other legs to pass someone back. (may in the medic tent)
– a bad run = a bad triathlon. Not quite as true in the other disciplines
On the other hand ” when all those around you have lost their mind and you go skipping past them” …. You win they are Losers ( forehead L)
— seen the Ironman Shuffle?
how to improve the run?- train some with runners ( bikers and swimmers too, triathletes will s l o w you down. Train when you can with those that KNOW the sport your an infant in.
1) off or early season road races. Excellent way to benchmark your run capabilities. A fresh open half marathon you do 2:00 hrs. Now what can I expect in a half ironman? Reasonably a 2: 20? Or a 2:05?
With the open fresh race you have the bench mark.
Do we ever do the run in a triathlon fresh? You wish! If you rode the bike portion with your mom, maybe.
2) Triathlons , and even oly distance ( 2 plus hours) are endurance events. Endurance means your going to be running tired. Get tired, then race as above( #1) Enter a 5k, 10k, half or even a marathon tired. It takes a bit of ego bashing to run a 10k after doing a hard 30 on the bike or after running 10 miles to get to the race but in the end, it’s. Running tired and that’s how you run in a tr.
3) you don’t have to race tired to get the benefit of fatigue friendly running. You can fatigue train as well.
Ex. Easy ten miler the morning after a track workout
Ex. Morning long run of 17 followed by an easy 30 minutes, grass run that evening.
Ex long run Sat 15, Sunday same 2 hour run on un measured course.
The point is tri running is tired running/ straight up road racing you aren’t fatigued until late. It’s short term pain vs a long and drawn out death.
* warning – unless you ride a bike with eyes closed or swim with an anvil , there is nothing in tri training more injury likely than the running described above.
– avoid this pitfall by knowing what you can handle- limitations (experience) and, if in question or getting close to race date , be safe not sorry.Back off.
Keep form when tired. Push out hips and chest. Write it on your hand ,topside when your reach for water you see it. FormFormForm….avoid the slump.
-Pay me to yell it at you from the sidelines….”form form form”
4) Stay within your limits on the bike- heart rate monitor monitor…. Wear three if you have to. Don’t just wear one but know the data and what it means to your body. Know what 5 or 6 or 7 hours on a bike leaves your legs feeling like and your overall fatigue with an avg hr of 120? 130? 140? 150? 160? What can I do after such an effort….. Know before you go.
5) another brick in the wall. Run off the bike some. 50 min max but 30 is fine. Spin high cadence the last five min of bike. If optimal is 90 for you the try for a few min of 95 and 100 but no more effort, gear down and spin out those legs. Scootch up in the saddle…way forward looking straight down at front axel Getting running muscle groups ready.
6) hydrate and eat on the bike to prepare for the run. Eat solid food if you prefer solids. The movement of the run makes solid food digestion pret near impossible for many. Be prepared to walk, even early at aid stations. A few seconds saved by hurrying thru AID STATIONS can add mucho time o , between mile 23 and 26, or miles 10-13 in a half . Get what you need , keep moving and get back to a run as soon as you can.
7) key on others in the race. Always be looking to pass… Don’t settle for same pace…..pass pass pass pass . This is why you bike like your mom. Pass pass pass
Finally don’t be too quick to get down about a performance.
It’s a long day and many things can happen over 140 miles but it doesn’t mean the end won’t be meaningful or productive. A not so hot bike split may leave you a run time that song and story make famous.
Knocked in the head swim or someone swimming over top of you at a buoy is not a big deal. (seconds)
Spewing your last two aid stations may lighten the load for the last five miles.
Keep positive thoughts-
Question- a week before your key race, what’s the single most important thing you can do to have your best race ?