Today’s run was a 45min fartlek run. Fartleks are meant to be unstructured and at whatever intensity you want to hit at each time. And for that reason, I don’t get a lot out of fartleks when I do them. Obviously I’m either plainly lazy and don’t work hard enough, or I’m wimpy and don’t want to push myself as hard as I should. Or both. I don’t know the right answer, so I’ll say it’s both.
Today was different. I wanted to run with purpose, with a smart set to boost my level. So I set some guidelines to make these fartleks more like intervals. But rather than being based on time or distance, I set them to HR levels. To ensure I kept some form of aerobic activity, my warmup/cooldown max was 80%. When I started the fartleks, about 10min into the run, I would run as hard as I felt until I hit 90% maxHR, then I’d run easier until my HR fell back to 80% max HR. At that point I’d do another fartlek.
I didn’t bother counting how many iterations I completed, but I do know that it was a fair number. As expected, the recovery between them increased as the run went on from being more tired, but I always started out at a good state for the next one. Each fartlet lasted anywhere from 45sec to 60sec or so, and because of the recovery, I was able to put in a good, solid, focused effort on each one.
The workout was a total success. I loved it. And I can tell that this fartlek run will provide a good benefit, just from the fatigue I have right now.
Now I rest up for tonight’s swim. And figure out if I need to hide/blend the bare spots on my chest from that bloody holter monitor. How embarrassing! I look like a squirrel with mange! :D