In this article, we will design our own version of the triathlon – row, bike, and run – and give you some workout ideas to get started. As you begin to improve, you can play around with some of the variables and create your own row, bike, run workouts, and maybe even compete against your friends and other gym members!

When was the last time you focussed your workout around cardio training? I mean really targeted your whole training session around cardiorespiratory training? For the majority of gym users, cardio machines are used for warming up and cooling down only. If you’re a cardio lover, you may spend more time on your favourite machine.

But how often do you mix it up with other forms of cardio training? Those who compete in triathlon (swim, bike, run) will often have high levels of cardiorespiratory fitness, and elite triathletes are regarded as being amongst the fittest on the planet. The ability to perform three endurance activities in succession will not only bring cardiorespiratory and cardiovascular benefits, it can also introduce variety, fun and competition to an otherwise boring workout. And when you play around with distance, time and intensity, you can stay motivated in every workout.


Concept 2 rower

Tomahawk studio bike or WattBike

Precor or Woodway treadmill


Ensure that the rower and bike are set up in the correct position before you start your workout. Also make sure you complete an adequate warm up, with a pulse raiser and flexibility exercises.


This time-based workout is all about getting used to performing three activities in succession. While it is still physically challenging, use your first experience to notice how your body feels moving from one exercise to the next – think about your posture, fatigue, ability and skill.

Here’s the sequence:

  1. Row – 5 min @ easy/moderate resistance
  2. Bike – 5 min @ moderate resistance (minimum 90rpm)
  3. Run – 5 min @ 6-8kph

Aim to move quickly from one exercise to the next, but take a longer rest if required.


This distance-based workout will allow you to improve fitness and add some variety through a change in motivation. The focus on distance will bring on some self-competition to complete to improve your overall times.

Here’s the sequence:

  1. Row – 2000m @ moderate resistance
  2. Bike – 3000m @ moderate resistance (minimum 90rpm)
  3. Run – 2000m @ minimum 6kph

Aim to move quickly from one exercise to the next, but take a longer rest if required.


This time-based workout brings in higher loads but for short periods of time. Aim to work at around 75% of your capacity. With this in mind, you will only perform 4 cycles.

Here’s the sequence:

  1. Row – 1min @ high resistance
  2. Bike – 1min @ high resistance (minimum 90rpm)
  3. Run – 1 min @ 8-14kph
  4. Repeat cycle three more times

Aim to move quickly from one exercise to the next, but take a longer rest if required. The possible combinations for this type of workout are huge. Go for time, distance, resistance/load, speed, or change the order of the exercises. Find the best method that works for you and give it a try.

Finally, don’t forget to share your workout ideas and performance via Facebook and Instagram!