Category Archives: Glen Echo

A Sunday Brick

A few years ago if someone asked me if I wanted to do a brick, I’d say, “huh”?   I would think I know WHAT a brick is, but never knew you could actually do one.   For those of you that still aren’t following, a “brick” or more formally known as a “brick workout” is a workout designed for triathletes that could describe a variety of events, but for the purposes of triathlon prep it is defined as a swim, bike, or run workout immediately following a base workout. For example, a 20k bike after a 1600m swim would be a brick workout. Same thing for a 10k run after a 20k bike or a 5k run followed by a 600m swim.   I have been doing brick workouts now in preparation for a few triathlons coming up this season.  This morning was such an occasion.

The place – Glen Echo Park off MacArthur Boulevard.  If you don’t know about this place, its a very popular starting point for many triathletes in the Washington DC metro area due to its large parking lot and proximity to many long roads popular to bikers including MacArthur Boulevard, River Road, Canal Street, all of which I, along with my other training partners saw on this day.

On this day, we rode 40 miles followed by a 20 minute timed run.  The ride was great!  Rolling hills, fast pace.  We finished in just over 2 hours and 20 minutes, with approximately 15 minutes of stops.  James, one of my fellow riders, was having problems with his front derailler.  For those that don’t know what this is, this is a mechanism that allows the chain to go from the bottom chain ring to the top and back down when needed.  On this day, it was needed.  After fiddling with it for a few minutes and even looking on the smart phone for an easy website for quick fixes, we decided to roll along and James would stay in either his top or bottom chain ring changing it manually when required.   This of course naturally slowed him down, but he was a trooper and finished the ride successfully, even after taking a wrong turn a few miles from our finish.

The run went alright.  I completed approximately 2 1/3 miles in 20 minutes, for about a 9:30 minute per mile pace.  I don’t mind this pace, its rather comfortable, however my left hamstring doesn’t like it.  More rehab needed using foam rollers, trigger point therapy, massages, yoga and stretching.     We shall see how the triathlon in a few weeks works out, Greensboro Christmas in July.

Now, its breakfast time!

Tip(s) of the day:  If you want to ride from Glen Echo Park on a weekend, I suggest getting there early.  The parking lot fills up very quickly and many cars had to park on the grassy area (which the park police didn’t like very much).  Also, I suggest a basic bike maintenance class, which I have taken before but guess I didn’t retain the how to fix the front derailler part.