Duathlon Transition

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New Member
Hey all, im doing my first duathlon in about 6 weeks now but I'm quite worried about the transition, I obviously don't want to lose more time there than necessary. Its the London Duathlon if anyones interested.

Anyway, was just wondering about some transition advice between the run and bike. I figure, I come in from the first run, stick my helmet on, have a quick drink and change into my cycling shoes. The problem here though is that ill then have to run to the end of the transition area in my cycling shoes, which is a problem if the area is quite large as my cycling shoes are difficult to run in, im liable to fall over and of course i dont want to wear my cleats down to a stub by running a long way on them. Can you give me any advice to get around this problem?? I was told by someone to leave my shoes clipped in and try getting into the shoes whilst moving on the bike, but i find it extremely difficult to do this as the top clip on my shoes is a bit fiddly.

Also, a question about the bike section, what do you do if you get a puncture?? I dont really want to have to carry a pump, tubes and tyre levers, but will do if this is the normal thing to do

thanks in advance for any advice
Can't help you much Frazer - I have enough trouble with rolling around on my bike - let alone when it gets technical and wet!

However there is an associated article about your event in today's Guardian - in case you haven't seen it.


Good luck.


New Member
Bury, Lancashire
Can't you just ring the organisers and find out how many metres long the run to the bike is and make a decision based on that? Are you not allowed to put your cycling shoes next to the bike and put them on when you get there?


Started young, and still going.
Could you have your shoes already attached to your pedals, run to the start and then jump on the bike and do your shoes up with the first couple of pedal strokes? As for p*******s, You can but soemthing along the name of Slime which goes into you inner tube, carry a CO2 pump to pump up your tyre. should you get a p******e. Good luck.
How far are run-bike-run ? And just how seriously are you taking it ?
These maybe answer what you should do - a one-time-only duathlon done for the crack/fun/charity might require a different approach than if you were a serious du/triathlete doing a dozen events a year.

If it's only short, perhaps consider cycling in toeclips&straps and your running shoes - how much time would you lose on the bike compared to changing your shoes twice ?

If it's longer and you really want to cycle in your cycling shoes, yes you can change to your bike shoes and run through transition.
You will skate about on your cleats, but you can lean on the bike to a degree, it'll grip better on its rubber tyres than you.
You will wear them a bit, particularly if exposed plastic road cleats like Looks rather than metal MTB SPD cleats recessed into MTB-soled shoes.

Do you have both a MTB with SPD's and a roadbike with road cleats ? You could consider putting your SPD's on the roadbike for the event.

A serious triathlete will learn to do as you say, run from the swim in bare feet to the bike mount point, have the shoes clipped-onto the bike.
You use rubber bands between the pedals and the bottle cage or front mech to hold the pedals in the correct position rather than drag/catch on the floor, jump onto the bike and pedal the first few yards on top of the shoes, then when uptospeed you put your feet into the shoes, which are tri-shoes with only one big velcro fastener and a big heeltab to get yourself in.
When completing the bike-leg and transitioning to the run, you take your feet out of the shoes as you cycle upto the transition stop line, doing the last few yards on top of the shoes again, then keeping one foot on the shoe you lift the other over the top of the bike, then hop off and straight into running through transition, barely slowing down.
Again the running shoes you put on are tri-shoes with quick fasteners so you're into them and off that much quicker.

However, I don't recommend any of this unless you know what you're doing and practice it quite a bit beforehand. Chances are you'll make a hash of it in the heat of the race and fall off the bike or sprain your ankle or something !

Re p*nct*res - yes, you can buy a little aerosol of slime which is supposed to seal and reinflate the tyre. Tape it to the back of your seatpost or somewhere so you don't have to carry it.

Best thing though is to avoid them - pump tyres to correct pressure, check before the race that there's no bits of glass, etc embedded in them, look where you're going and avoid potholes, etc and hope !


New Member
Thanks a lot for the advice...its a 10k run/20k bike/5k run. I get a lot more power out of my cycling shoes (with SPD SL pedals) so i would prefer to cycle in them, so im going to go to an empty car park one night and spend a while trying to repeatedly change from trainers to cycle shoes, but if it takes me too long then ill go with the toe clips and take a bit longer on the bike, but save transition time


Über Member
Hi Frazer, it's not that hard to learn how to cycle on top of your shoes and then get into and do them up when you have some speed, just takes a couple of practice runs. Instead of buying tri shoes, just use one of your fasteners and pin the others out of the way, being inventive is part of the fun.

As for punctures, best not to think about them!!


Über Member
I did this last year...

Hi Fraser,
I took part in this event last year and the transition area is on GRASS (except for the mount and dismount areas).

I have been experimenting recently with leaving my shoes on my bike and after a bit of trial and error its actually quite easy. I have shimano shoes with ratchet clips and had to work out not only getting my feet into the shoes but also getting my feet out. After running up and down my road for 30 minutes jumping on and off my bike (and bemusing my neighbours) I now have it down. Rubber bands are a must to get started.

I am fairly new to all this having completed just one Duathlon and one Triathlon. The transitions are much quicker in Duathlon so it is important to get them right.
All you should be thinking is helmet, shades, bike - go. Forget having a drink in transition, you should have one clipped to your bike, save it for when you are moving.

One final point, the first run is only 9k at Richmond, happy days!


Senior Member
It's as Andy says Frazer. One thing though, don't take your helmet off until you have racked the bike.
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