Sunday, February 6, 2011

A-fartlek-ing we will go!

Yea! I did my first series of fartleks today! That being said, we're still trying to adjust around my house to saying the word "fartlek" with a straight face!

I didn't do a ton today, but I did 4x800m (about .5 mile) today. Ideally, when you do fartleks, you want to go at a pace that pushes yourself just a little beyond what you're normally comfortable running. For me, this meant keeping a pace up of around 6.0 to 6.2 mph, which I know to many runners would be their normal jogging pace, but for me, that's pushing it pretty hard. In between each one you can do a resting walk or jog. Jeff Galloway suggests about 2:30 to 3 minutes between each 800m fartlek, so I tried to stick to the 2:30. By the final (4th) fartlek I was feeling pretty beat up. However, if I think about it, the fact that I was able to continue running at my normal 5-ish mph pace for another 40 minutes after that means I couldn't have been TOO much the worse for wear.

Initially when I got done with my workout today I was a little disappointed with my seemingly average pace... as you'll see below, it's nothing special for any given workout for me. However, after I was completely done and off the treadmill (and the oxygen had returned to my brain), I remembered that today's 75 minutes included a 5 minute warm-up at a much slower pace... so when you take that into account, the other 70 minutes were actually pretty good. I think if I take out the warm-up my pace came out to about 5.1 mph, which is a little better than normal... yea! My pace wasn't so bad after all.

The main point of the fartleks is to try and bring a little speed into your endurance runs. Ideally, you would be able to carry this surge forward & fall back pacing into a race, which would ideally allow you to run the entire race at a little better pace than straight line pacing might. I'm not sure how rigidly I'll be able to adhere to that principle, but I think that doing these speed intervals is good for my training, no matter how much of the actual technique translates over to race day.

In the meantime, I think I will try saying the word "fartlek" at least 15 times a day in order to desensitize myself... no one in the running community will take me seriously if I can't at least fake a straight face when I say it out loud... no matter how much I'm cracking up on the inside!

Today's Run
Miles: 6.18
Time: 1:15
Pace: 4.9 mph
Treadmill  Run


Heather said...

It doesn't matter how many times you say it. There's always someone snickering, and that gets me going. lol

Run with Jess said...

you said "fartlek".... hee, hee, hee!!
You go girl - great run!!