Running can get boring, we are out of the honeymoon phase of lockdown, and now signing the divorce papers. That pile of books has become dustier and your aspirations of competing in Tokyo 2021 may have gone out the window… If you’re anything like me you’ve been out running, a couple of press ups have been pressed, a few kick ups have been kicked, but you’re now a bit bored with the 5k.
Fartlek training is a great way to spice up your run and keep moving.
For those of you who did GCSE P.E., you might remember Fartlek training – and who would have thought that knowledge would be coming in handy now. This style of training involves you varying your pace throughout your run, alternating between fast segments and slower jogs.
To try a Fartlek workout, all you need to do is introduce some short periods of higher pace into your normal run, maintain this pace for a short distance, or for 30 seconds.
Use landmarks along your run for the finish lines for your higher paced runs, like lampposts, bins etc. Once you’ve completed the fast paced run, slow down to a pace that’s below your normal jog.
Once you have returned to your normal breath, return to your normal pace, and when you’re feeling up to it, resume the fast pace again over a selected distance or time.
Community member Rob Hallett has being using Fartlek training to break up the monotony of his everyday runs and it’s worked in keeping him motivated to pull on his running shoes and hit the road regularly.
“Fartlek has been really good for breaking up my normal run and keeping things interesting. It mimics a lot of team sport situations and it’s a bit like being a kid again, except you’re just racing yourself to ‘that tree’. I know a lot of people find jogging quite boring for long periods of time so this can really help to take your mind off the slog.”
Try a 30 minute run, and plan to have 4 fast paced runs interspersed throughout, running at a fast pace for around 30 seconds or 100m. I’d recommend queuing those tunes that really get you going and run fast throughout the choruses of these songs.
Improved strength and endurance are among the benefits of Fartlek training. It also mimics sports such as football and basketball to get you prepared for post lockdown. Don’t put yourself down if you’ve lost motivation to work out everyday, it’s easy to get bored with doing the same routine. Switch it up by trying something different and stay active.