Kirsten Sweetland “Running off the bike is a pretty foreign feeling. I try to minimize that by doing short 10- to 20-minute fast runs off the bike every week leading into a big race and throughout the race season. Eventually you start to lose that heavy feeling the more you do it.”
The Commonwealth Games silver medallist and Olympic hopeful’s strategy makes sense for those who are aiming to excel over the sprintor standard-distance. If you’re gunning for a fast time, or seeking a podium finish, you don’t have the luxury of spending the first few kilometres building to your race pace. The more you practice getting off the bike and running fast, the easier it will be. Andrew Yorke “Focus on cadence, work on a high leg turnover and try to pick up your knees. Running a set like 25 to 30 x 200 m at 5-km pace with a 100-m jog recovery, focusing on turnover, will help with this sensation.”
The Olympic hopeful’s painful sounding 200 set focuses on the process and technique needed to excel in the run leg of a race, while also providing a solid fitness test that’s sure to get you more prepared to run fast out of T2.
Lisa Bentley “Running hill intervals off the bike is a great way to build power, threshold, strength and speed. Start with 30 to 45 seconds of running hard up the hill, jogging easy back down. Repeat that continuously for 15 minutes. This is not only for the body, but also builds the confidence needed for the run. “Bike/run/bike/run/bike/run transition workouts, where you interchange from a short bike interval to a short run interval, are good too. The ideal is to do this on a bike trainer and treadmill. Warm up on both the bike and the run, then ride for 8 to 12 minutes hard and transition to 3 to 5 minutes of hard, fast running. “Add strides to an easy run each week to work on speed, form and leg turnover.”
The 11-time Ironman champion was arguably one of the best female runners in the sport, clocking numerous sub-three hour marathons in her Ironman races.
Andrew Yorke coming off the bike during the Pan Am games in Toronto 2015
Kirsten Sweetland during a Rio Olympic test event