Fartlek is a Swedish word whose translation is speed game. It is an activity related to running training that was born in Sweden around the 30s of the XNUMXth century and is ideal for improving endurance. Your goal is to play with speed in a natural way, leaving the control of time and heart rate in a secondary plane. Is about work with change of pace at intervals.
The basis is to increase and decrease the speed in free running so that it goes changing training load. However, the intensity and duration are not planned but the usual thing is to adapt it to the race terrain and it can be alternated according to the sensations of the runner. With this he manages to change the effort during the session.
It is a great training system to improve resistance due to its adaptability and simplicity, however, it must be introduced gradually. The paces will vary depending on the runner. The essence is not to roll throughout the session but to vary it for a few seconds, increasing the speed and intensity for about 30 seconds several times. With training, those 30 seconds will become 45 and then one minute. However, time does not have to be the variable since the guideline can be given by the route and be marked by an element in sight until the one that will be run at a more intense pace.
The difference between fartlek and interval training is that the latter has a predefined sprint plan and alternates between two fixed speeds while fartlek is more flexible, so the demands on the body are different since in fartlek it uses different muscle groups and improves coordination.
The fartlek also has a playful aspect that is very motivating for those who practice it and provides psychological benefit in demanding training routines. It is about playing, knowing the limits and becoming familiar with them so that in the race you will know more and better the responses of your body. That is why it is so important that beginners take special care with the effort they put in. Finally, it is advisable to do it at a time of filming a not finish at the end of a speed interval.
How to practice Fartlek?
By terrain: it is about choosing a terrain with different slopes and lengths.
By distance: Changes in pace are marked by the distance traveled.
For time: It is the most traditional and seeks to be as long as possible in the speed range.
By pulsations: It requires a heart rate monitor and consists of controlling the speed intervals by increasing the pulsations to a specific number.
- Improves stamina
- Improves aerobic capacity and muscle shape
- The legs and the body in general get used to changes in rhythm
- You learn to control your breathing in rapid rhythms
- It’s fun and playful