I've done rather a dangerous thing... had a look on the net, especially YouTube, at options for trying to go a bit faster at Parkrun... that is faster for an overweight (though not as much as I was!) 50 year old.
Its a bit overwhelming... lots of advice, some of it contradictory however I came across "Fartlek"... I'm sure a lot of you will know but its a Swedish system which translates as "fun with speed" (that maybe some sort of contradiction or it may reflect the Swedish sense of humour. Anyway, its ... well I'll let the Runners world site give a better definition
"Fartlek workouts are not only fun to say out loud, but they're fun to run. Fartlek is Swedish for "speed play," and that is exactly what it’s all about. Unlike tempo and interval work, fartlek is unstructured and alternates moderate-to-hard efforts with easy throughout. After a warm up, you play with speed by running at faster efforts for short periods of time (to that tree, to the sign) followed by easy-effort running to recover. It’s fun in a group setting as you can alternate the leader and mix up the pace and time. And in doing so, you reap the mental benefits of being pushed by your friends through an unpredictable workout. The goal is to keep it free-flowing so you’re untethered to the watch or a plan, and to run at harder efforts but not a specific pace.
Benefits: Stress-free workout that improves mind-body awareness, mental strength and stamina.
This short vid also explained it pretty well
The thing that appealed to me was the unstructured bit.. I've had a bit of a go at the 10K bridge podcasts and the Sami Murphy ones (which I find a bit quiet... new headphones on order from fleabay which might help). Unfortunately I haven't settled into them as well as the C25K. Usually at Parkrun (I say usually... I've only done 6!) I use C25K week 9 or my own music.
On New Years Day, as I have said in a post else where I went to the local park with the intention of trying a Fartlek type run, or at least my own version of it. Low an behold there was a Parkrun about to start that I hadn't known about (Not on Facebook you see) so Idid that instead (just a few seconds off my PB at 37:30 ... grrrr) so no Fartlek.
To cut a long story short (sorry for rambling... thanks for reading this far) I had a go on the gym treadmill today. It was first day back at work as a school teacher so I needed a run!
I ran for 40 min and covered 4.6K. I started off with 2 min fast warm up walk, 2 min jog at my normal pace and then a 1 min fast run (pace about 5.20). I kept variations of this up for 25 min then the last 10 mins or so I did my normal jog again and finished with a 2 min walk... Oh I also used the incline feature for the first time! Low setting but I did use it.
The 40 mins did seem to go quicker but I am feeling the results a bit. I'll probably try it again but plan to have next two days off then do Parkrun on Saturday. I don't expect instantaneous results but I did wonder if anyone else has tried fartlek, likes it, hates it etc.