A proper good fart(lek)

So, it is 7 weeks tomorrow (eek!) to my 10k race and I am now following the Bupa training schedule, which is basically the usual 3 mile runs during the week and increasing long runs at the weekend, up to 6 miles in a couple of weeks.

However, the programme goes on about Fartlek interval runs in the midweek runs. Now I've obviously done intervals on c25k and there was proper structure to the timings. I get the impression that there is no structure to the fartlek and its twisting my melon a bit.

Anyone got any tips? Is it simply easy, sprint, recover and repeat? is it best to base the hard running on time or distance?

All tips greatfully received from you lovely people!!!

10 Replies

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  • I love a good fartlek. The way I do them is just to vary my speed over a variable distance. Most of the time I just pick something in sight and run faster to it. Sometimes a little faster, sometimes really fast. If I push too hard I take walk breaks. I love them, it's just like running as a kid. I've only done them for short runs though 3-4 k.

  • There are various kinds of fartlek, a guy I ran with (once only, he was too fast for me :-P) taught me the pyramid: 1 minute fast, 1 minute slow, 2 minutes fast, 2 minutes slow, 3 minutes fast, 3 minutes slow, 2 minutes fast, 2 minutes slow, 1 minute fast, 1 minute slow.

  • Ah good stuff, might have a go at that. Had a bit of a Google and saw something similar!

  • On the asics plan you get exact instructions about intervals. They occur as part of your training plan. I ran 3 x 1k ones yesterday, with walks in between. These are good for increasing your speed ☺

  • Ah ok, got a 10k plan loaded for the race and there aren't any intervals on it yet. Might have some for the 10 miler in October! How fast are you going on the splits?

  • I'm doing a 10 miler and a 10k or 2. your predicted times will be based on previous races or parkrun time, so that will form the basics of your asics suggested splits.

    With asics plans you get split times based on the race time or parkrun time you gave them. This really helps as it takes the guesswork out of it

    My average across all runs thus far on my current plan is over 6.09 min/km but i have managed to do a kilometre under 5! That was downhill though. LOL😊

    Just keep plugging away. You have to put the miles in and you will get faster but it does take time. You're younger than me so you will get there somewhat quicker.

    Eat healthily mind you. A few pounds off could knock a few seconds off your time ☺

  • I'm going to have a tweak of myasics and see of I can get it to work for me. I'm more inclined to trust myasics given the positive reviews on here rather than the BUPA training plan...

  • Bupa is ok but it's not as detailed . The asics one is bang on but you have to do the initial question/answer questionnaire right. Bear in mind you are still a beginner so take the "easy" option and do 3 runs a week. Four if you feel you can manage it. ☺

  • All noted. Thanks for your input! Got it figured to average and 3 times a week, comes out to a target time of 65 minutes which sounds about the number I would think (based on a 32 min 5k)

  • Good! That gives you a basis to start your plan. This is fluid depending on how you do. Asics will suggest tweaks as you progress

    Speaking of which, myasics have today suggested I change my projected start time as I'm running faster, so they have suggested knocking off a whole 7 minutes off my projected race time. This will be because I chose the "easy" runs option. I have accepted the change but if I find myself getting too knackered they will knock it back down again. It will give me the impetus to drive my runs though, so hopefully on the day I will do better than expected. It's hilly though so I'm gonna be realistic

    So you now have detailed split times to work on, which should help you no end. Put these into your virtual pacer on your watch each time you set out for your run

    Have fun!

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