Based on the Isle of Tiree in the Hebrides, Tiree Fitness brings you the opportunity to feel good about your health and fitness. Whether that means shaping up, getting out in the fresh air, or working up a sweat in the gym; you can do it. Tiree Fitness offers you the chance to do what you’ve been putting off for so long. So get off the couch, put on your shoes, lets go…..
I though I’d share one of my key sessions that I use throughout the year. This is one of those things every triathlete should do, but is also hugely beneficial as a general fitness training tool. And as always, understanding what you’re trying to achieve will allow you to get the most from this infinitely flexible session format.
What is a brick session? Simply put it’s a bike and run session. Sometimes called a transition session. You go from bike to run with minimal fuss in between.
Why do it? It will get you better at running off the bike. You’re trying to condition the body to go from the demands of cycling into an efficient and relaxed running mode. Plus, you’re practicing the actual transition that you’re going to be doing on race day, which straight away is going to save you seconds if not minutes that would otherwise take a lot of energy to take back on the run.
So I’ve got two brick session formats to chose from:
The short fast one: 1hr. This session is all about the changeover. You bike and run just long enough to get into a rhythm. It’s gets your muscles used to switching between movements, and it gets your whole body used to changing posture without loss of form.
Format: After a warm up, you do a 5 minute bike followed by a 5 minute run. Keep repeating for an hour with the fastest transitions you can. Your focus is to go smoothly from bike to run and back again.
Pro tip – Mark a 5 minute out-and-back course or a 5 minute loop. Your challenge is then to do 6 bike/run laps in an hour including transition time. When this gets easy just make the lap slightly bigger and try and get those 6 laps within the hour. This is a great group workout for mixed abilities.
The Big Brick: 1.5hrs+. This is a different session as the focus is now on adapting the body to run strongly after a long bike. You need to be on the bike long enough, or go hard enough to feel some fatigue. And your run should be long enough to develop endurance but not so long that you lose form. I’d suggest running about two thirds your bike duration but you can be flexible here.
Pro workout: My favourite session here is a 40km bike followed by a 10km run, the duration works well for me and I’ve got convenient loops for those distances to make it enjoyable. But you could halve those distances, or double them, or for a real killer session you can do the 40km/10km brick twice through – now that’s a session!
To brick or not to brick
Both these sessions should be done throughout the year, you could do them both every week or alternate weeks. Understand what you’re trying to achieve and work the format to suit your goals and ability. It’s one of my favourite sessions as it breaks up what can be a long workout, and although it feels horrible at first you’ll notice yourself getting stronger every time you do it. Enjoy!
Here’s a quick note having got back recently from doing the G2E Ultra.
First the details – it’s a 56 mile run, it follows the canal tow path, you start in Glasgow, you run to Edinburgh. That’s about it. It took me 7hrs49 and I finished 8th overall.
But the results are not really the point, the point was, well actually there wasn’t much point! I think my reason for entering was just to see what it would be like to run an Ultra, to see if it was possible just off the background fitness from racing ironman, without much training (baby Rufus can take the blame for that), and without using any gels or fancy nutrition (I took dates, a lion bar, and a cheese and ham sandwich made by the lovely Joyce Campbell).
- What was it like – well it’s a long day, it’s a stupidly long way and there’s just no getting around it, I didn’t feel on great form so it really became a mental slog of chipping away through the kms
- Was it ok to rely on general fitness – yes, the fitness wasn’t a problem, racing ironman translates well, the difficulty was the legs absorbing all that mileage. There’s no short cut for preparing for that side of it
- Doing it without gels – definitely. A pack of dates was perfect, some normal food with no sickly sweetness was better than sugary gels
Did I enjoy it? Well there were definitely times where I just wanted it to end, in fact the last 13 miles I would quite happily forget. But even when it was hurting, even when the charm of the canal had worn off, and I was on my own and it was raining; it was still better than being stuck in traffic, or in the office, or doing all the things we have to do that are just a waste of time. So if you’re ever in that dark place during a race or training run, just remember all the times you wished you could just get out and go for a run. Keep going and you will get to the finish. And you’ll feel better for all the hurt it took to get there.
Having said that, I’m not rushing to enter another ultra just yet. This season is about enjoying the racing, and doing as many different events as possible. The Ultra is done, next up is Edinburgh Marathon at the end of May.
Happy Running everyone.
Here’s a quick update on the Tiree 10k & Half Marathon – we’ve got over 200 entries so far, so it’s already the biggest year ever! If you’ve still not entered and want to be part of this years event there are still places left, you can sign up here - http://www.tireefitness.co.uk/events/tiree-10k/
And we’re also offering a 10% early bird discount for our autumn Training Camp in Mallorca. We’ve just put the final details together for the camp – this one’s going to be really special:
- bike and run sessions every day
- functional strength and core stability sessions to give your training an extra edge
- we’ll give you specific coaching for triathlon and cross training
- you’ll enjoy trail running, road biking, transition sessions, intervals, hills, tempo runs – lots of mileage and training volume
- all the things that make Mallorca a top destination
- and altogether you’re guaranteed an amazing week of training to finish your 2014 season and set you up for the winter
The early bird offer applies to the end of April, but we have limited places on the camp so if you do want to join the team make sure you check the info on the website and get your booking form in - http://www.tireefitness.co.uk/training-camps/when-and-where/
There’s loads more info on the training camp pages but feel free to drop me an email or give me a call.
Fitness classes with Will are back – “I’ve taken everything learnt from our Training Camps and all the hype about High Intensity Training and put this into 2 supercharged classes. We’ll make sure it’s suitable for different abilities, but whatever lever you’re at, you bring it, you work hard, and you’ll see results.”
SuperToned: Mondays 6pm – it’s not just Legs Bums and Tums, it’s now the whole body. High Intensity to get you in the best shape for the summer. This is a 1 hour class where you know you’ll work. And as an optional extra – this class will be followed by 30mins pure Netball. Work hard and play hard and get results.
Circuits: Thursdays 6pm – This class is a mix of everything; cardio, abs, legs and arms. But it’s done at your own pace as you go round the circuit. It’s another 1 hour class and it will make you stronger, fitter and give you an all over shape up.
SuperToned + Netball: 6pm, starts Monday 31st March, School Hall
Circuits: 6pm, starts Thursday 3rd April at the School Hall
Classes are £4 each. They will only run for a short time so come and get the best of it. Easter Holiday programme to be announced at the first class.
Just a quick post to let you know what’s coming up for January. But first of all, Happy New Year everybody and all the best for 2014
Lots of people have been asking about classes. So….. we’re starting with a 6 week programme to give you a kickstart towards improving your fitness and getting in shape. This begins on 13th January. The idea is that you stick with it for 6 weeks and see real results.
Each week you’ve got the option of:
Monday night class - Legs, Bums and Tums
Thursday night class - NetFit (Netball mixed with a workout class)
and also on Thursday nights there will be a Circuits class
There’s also gym sessions available at Sandaig if you want an extra push in the right direction
And on Saturday morning it’s Boot Camp at An Talla at 9am.
You can come to whichever classes you like. As well as getting a thorough workout you will get the motivation to stick with it for the rest of the week. All abilities are welcome so don’t worry if you’ve not exercised for a while.
I’ll post again next week with times, venues, prices etc. If you’re interested in getting in shape in the new year drop me an email and let me know which classes you’d like to come to. 6 weeks is a good timescale, so sign up and commit to getting in shape and improving your fitness!