Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Stronger Bike = Stronger Run

I was talking to a triathlon friend and amazing athlete yesterday who has put up some very impressive times this year (and PRs even), especially on the triathlon run. He was talking about everything he did to improve his run, on the bike. Yep, on the bike. More biking, more intense biking, more biking with fast people. And when you can bike strong and still have legs left, you can run fast. That's the bottom line, your bike controls your run.

So I was thinking about my triathlon this weekend, how disappointed I was in my run performance. Yeah yeah, I know I had a pretty good race overall and was pleased with my results, but after every race I'm really looking for the take-aways, what can I do to get better? Especially when one segment falls short like my run did this time. I mean I'm never a very fast runner, but 27:27 for the 5k run segment is 2.5 minutes off of my normal sprint distance run time. That's almost a minute per mile. So clearly I did something wrong. Part of it was definitely that my left glute/hamstring was locking up on me, but I've run through stuff like that before and still performed decently.

So after talking with Andy yesterday, it dawned on me: part of the reason I'm running slow is that I have no biking base. And of course I have no biking base because I broke my arm in February and wasn't on the bike for a couple of months. Who would've thought a broken arm would mess up my run? But clearly, I don't have the biking legs right now to put forth a strong run in a triathlon, even though my standalone 5k time right now is faster than it was last year when I ran a faster sprint triathlon 5k. That's one thing I love about this sport, no matter how long you've been doing it, there's always more to learn. I'm grateful that I have some awesome athletes around who are endeavoring to take their performance to the next level, and I can learn so much from them.

Now, before I tackle an Oly distance this year, I clearly have get my biking back up to par. Onwards!


Anonymous said...

I feel you on that...and am a staunch supporter of that notion!

Marv said...

This post is close to home, Robin. My run is just terrible and I seem OK on the bike but like you mentioned about yourself, I don't have the base on the bike. This gives me a different perspective as I have been trying to run more since my last tri. Of course, recovery cost on running is much higher. Thanks for the insight shared.

janasmama said...

I completely agree! I have noticed that my cycling has transferred to running during the training we've done over the last few months. Looks like Skinner Butte is calling you. Plus we should go do the Greenhill time trial again too!