I am just wondering if anyone here runs fartleks consistantly. If so does it give you the same cardiovascular benefit as jogging steadily for a long period of time. I have heard that it doesn't give as much of a stamina benefit but does more to stimulate fast twitch muscles. Anyone got some advice?
It's more realistic conditioning training for fighting than distance running. In a fight, you're using both anerobic and aerobic conditioning, hence, why this would be more effective.
When I do run (I HATE running) this is how I do it.
What is a fartlek?
&lt;Me&gt; John, what do you know about Zen Buddhism? &lt;John&gt; *smacks me*
&lt;John&gt; I'd have to smack you sometime...
"does it give you the same cardiovascular benefit as jogging steadily for a long period of time"
The same benefit? No. Better benefit? Yes.
I don't think there's any even semi-serious runner (any distance) who doesn't do some kind of interval training (fartlek or otherwise -- I think a lot of people confuse fartleks with more intense intervals). The benefits of intervals vary depending on the kind you do, but generally they
-improve your overall running speed much more efficiently than consistently running at a slow pace would,
-improve VO2 max,
-stimulate fast-twitch muscle, as you said, and
-if you do short intense intervals, provide anaerobic conditioning.
Just do a net search. There's tons of information out there.
Basically, Fartlek style running is where you alternate your pace between light effort jogging and max effort sprinting.
"Basically, Fartlek style running is where you alternate your pace between light effort jogging and max effort sprinting."
Hate to contradict the man who's paying for me to be here, but when I was first told about fartlek (about 15 years ago) it meant alternating between jogging and running at a quicker pace, but not sprinting (say, running at a 22k pace as a base and then stepping up to a 5k pace). Flat-out sprinting was referred to as interval training.
Of course, the meaning could have changed since then. The original word fartlek just means "speed-play", apparently.
When we did it in the good ol' U.S. Army, we were practically sprinting. No, it wasn't a 100 yd dash pace, but definitely not a pace I could keep up for more than 500 yards at most.
Maybe my definition of "sprinting" was a bit loose.
Hmmm ... I first heard about fartlek training from a distance runner, so maybe that's why my story's different than yours. Not a big difference anyway, I guess -- it's all interval training.
I can still post here, right? (cringing in terror from the admin)
Its interval training.
You do need both.
I did soley interval training for a year or so, and it gives you huge benefits.
However, I found that in longer sparring sessions I'd still wear out far easier than I should have.
Probably because my interval training sessions should have been longer (I did 20 minutes). But you can't keep up intense interval training for too long.
Thank's guys! That helped me a ton i've looked through some more info on the net and I guess I will be incorporating fartleks into my running from now on. WOO HOO better conditioning! Always get a charge out of trying something new and different <img src=icon_smile_big.gif border=0 align=middle>