Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Fartlek- Swedish Delights

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Fartlek is a form of road running or cross country running in which the runner, usually solo, varies the pace significantly during the run. It is usually regarded as an advanced training technique, for the experienced runner who has been using interval training to develop speed and to raise the anaerobic threshold. However, the 'average' runner can also benefit from a simplified form of Fartlek training, to develop self-awareness and to introduce variety into the training program.

Fartlek is similar to interval training in that short fast runs alternate with slow running or jogging recovery intervals. However, in Fartlek the running is done on the road or on parkland or bush tracks. There is no predetermined schedule to follow, but instead the athlete will set her/his own interval lengths and pace in response to their own feeling of the workload. An advantage of Fartlek is that the athlete can concentrate on feeling the pace and their physical response to it, thereby developing self awareness and pace judgement skills. Also the athlete is free to experiment with pace and endurance, and to experience changes of pace.

It is primarily a technique for advanced runners because it requires 'honesty' to put in a demanding workload, and also 'maturity' to not overdo the pace or length of the intervals. With these qualities, Fartlek makes for an excellent component of a distance runners training programme.

Other related sites,Click : Cool Site on Everything's FARTLEK- Kungfu styles, More Fartleks..

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