THE MUMBLES DUATHLON
Pacing is key at this flat run/ hilly bike duathlon. Regular racer Mike Hughes has the info and sessions
The first 5k run is a nice flat one and hugs the coastline of the picturesque Mumbles Bay. As with any race it’s easy to get carried away with the excitement of the event, so it’s important to stick to your planned pace and save your legs for the bike and last run leg of the duathlon. See sessions 1 and 2 to help you prep for this section.
The bike section is stunning, and after leaving T1 it’s only a brief spell on the flats of the beach front before you hit the first gradual hill of this undulating course. It has a number of tough but relatively short climbs, the main ones being at two, five, eight, 10 and 15.5 miles. The total course climb is 414m with the longest climb being approx. 1.5 miles long. The road surface is mainly smooth with some exposed windy areas, and there’s some good stretches of road where you can get down on the tri-bars – from mile 17 onwards the course is a fast downhill into T2. See sessions 3 and 4 to help you nail the bike course and T2.
This event is early on in the season so the weather can be unpredictable; it pays to check the weather before the event as you may need to put a jacket on. Your body will warm up on the first run, but it can be cold on some of the bike descents.
As with any event, whenever possible, I’d recommend carrying out a recce of the course by either driving or riding it, so you know where you’re going and are mentally prepared for the toughest parts.
The final 5k run is a repeat of the now familiar first run. Don’t start out too hard as it takes a while for your legs to make the transition from cycling to running. This is where your brick-session training comes into its own – focus on your form and get into your rhythm, keep running and maintain your race-pace strategy and you’ll soon be crossing the infamous red carpet finish line. Next month: Challenge Gran Canaria on 27 April