Top 5 tips on How to train for a Duathlon from Head Coach at Runna & Ironman Coach 

Training for your first duathlon or chasing down a new PB? Here is everything you need to know!

Practice running after you’ve been on the bike

This is called a ‘brick run’ and will be a weird sensation to most people who have never run on already fatigued legs. Most of the benefits of a brick run will be achieved in the first 3k so there is less need to worry about having to do your longer run sessions after a bike session (which would be incredibly time consuming!). For most people wanting to take a Duathlon seriously, I’d suggest doing 1 brick session every fortnight.

Prioritise your strength!

It’s much more important to make sure your body is strong to withstand the load and impact of running when you have to do it twice in one race, as well as after being hunched over on a bike working some of those supporting muscles too. As a result, it’s even more important to prioritise your strength to be injury adverse and strong for the event too.

Think about your kit

For most people, a Duathlon might be a segway into a Triathlon or your first stab at a multi-sport event. As a result, you’ll have the new challenge of having to think about transition. This is the period of time between the different legs of the race. Plan ahead and think about what shoes / socks / helmet / sunglasses you’ll want to wear for each element. Have a plan for BOTH transitions. I’d even prepare mentally or even in real life, walking yourself through what you’ll wear for each section to check you have everything you need. 

When it comes to the day, you’ll also want to lay out your kit nicely so it’s ready to slip on for each transition. I plan each detail and will leave my socks in the bike shoes all ready (left and right set up). I even have my gels which I’ll want to take on the final run waiting in the run shoes so I know exactly where everything is.

Get used to fuelling! 

Doing a run on its own often allows you to get away without learning to fuel on the go. When you’re doing a longer race with multiple elements, it becomes critical to become familiar with fuelling on the go. Therefore, practice taking on gels / energy bars / sweets when cycling or running so you can become familiar with how it feels on the tummy and ensure those food choices you plan to make on the big day work for you. I’d even suggest practicing your pre-race breakfast as well so that you leave nothing to chance on the big day.


I’d 100% recommend doing a trial run of the sport in a more simple capacity. If you’re preparing for the Olympic distance, aim to do a test run on a training weekend, doing maybe half the distance (I.e a 5k run, 22k ride, 2.5k run) to get a sensation of the different uncertainties. This will allow you to practice that transition routine, check your Tri- suit doesn’t rub or the kit choice works for both sports and that your legs work running after the bike too!

Thanks to our Official Training Partner Runna for providing this content