Fartlek Training

By TAKU

What comes around goes around

Fartlek, meaning Speed Play, is a form of training that has been around for many years. Fartlek training was developed in the 1930s by Swedish coach Gosta Holmer (1891-1983). It was designed for the Swedish cross-country teams that had been thrashed throughout the 1920s by Paavo Nurmi and the Finns. Holmer’s plan used a faster-than-race pace and concentrated on both speed and endurance training.

Fartlek training is essentially a form of Interval Training performed in an informal, unstructured manner. Fartlek sessions should ideally be done outside over natural terrain such as golf courses, trails or rolling fields.

Because of it’s free-style nature and emphasis on fun, outdoor runs, Fartlek training can be psychologically stimulating in a positive manner. When properly executed Fartlek training has the ability to develop both general and specific endurance for a broad array of athletes including those participating in field games such as soccer, field hockey, Ultimate Frisbee, lacrosse, and rugby league, as it develops aerobic and anaerobic capacities which are both used in these sports.

When implementing Fartlek sessions the pace should alternate between fast and slow with an emphasis on fast running. Outdoor Fartlek sessions are an excellent change of pace after being forced indoors during winter months or by bouts of inclement weather. Depending on how and when you cycle Fartlek runs into your current training regimen they may also act as a great form of active recovery.

When designing a Fartlek training session you are limited only by your imagination and the terrain you have access to. Remember Fartlek is a free style form of training. Look at it as structured improvisation. Do not worry too much about the exact order of exercises or distances that you run. Just be sure to challenge yourself and work hard.

Fartlek training is generally associated with running, but can include almost any kind of exercise. Below I have outlined just one example of the variety of exercises that could be included in a 2 – mile Fartlek session:

  • Jog or jump rope for 5- 10 minutes as a warm-up.
  • Do 5-6 minutes of brisk calisthenics covering all major muscle groups.*
  • Run a half mile at a fast, steady pace (about 75% max speed).
  • Jog a quarter-mile.
  • Perform three to four acceleration sprints of 150 yards (jog 50 yards, stride 50 yards, sprint 50 yards) walk 50 yards after each.
  • Do four to six sprints of 20-50 yards, jogging 50 yards between each one.
  • Jog a quarter-mile as a warm-down.
  • Stretch all major muscle groups

*Example of calisthenic circuit: 30 seconds on 15 seconds off.

  • Walking Lunges
  • Mountain Climbers
  • Sit-ups
  • Burpees
  • Bicycle crunches
  • Alternating back raise
  • Hamstring Bridges
  • T-stability push-ups

So there you have it, a simple and flexible system which practically guarantees that you will never get bored. Give Fartlek training a try and I am sure you will see and feel the fitness benefits while enjoying some time outdoors with nature.

PAU for NOW

TAKU

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TRAINING LIKE A CHAMP

One of the biggest mistakes I see people make in the gym is trying to emulate the training routines of champion athletes. Emulating the champs routine will not get anyone any closer to being the champ.

Remember most outstanding athletes are more a product of their personal mental and physical attributes then the actual training methods they utilize. These natural talents are then further enhanced through dedicated practice of specific sport skills and adherence to the proper physical preparedness protocols. Combine these with tactical motivational and philosophical support by the right coaches and mentors and we are witness to a sort of synergistic alchemy. This is the beauty of seeing the truly exceptional athlete in action. When seen at their peak you are witnessing the product of years of dedication and hard work.

So remember, there is no secret pill, powder, potion or routine that will guarantee athletic success. Be passionate about your sport. Combine that passion with a solid foundation of proper sports  nutrition, strength training and conditioning. Experiment to find what works best for you. Make a plan and keep accurate records. Seek out the guidance of the best coaches you can find and or afford. Train hard. Recover fully. Repeat.

Finally stop trying to be like anyone else. Be the best you, that you can be. And have fun while you are at it.

PAU for NOW

TAKU
www.hybridfitness.tv

Coaches Corner: Strength

Six Guidelines for creating successful strength training Programs.

In today’s edition of the Coaches Corner series, I present six basic guidelines I follow when creating strength training programs for my athletes and clients.

1. Maintain progressive overloads

2. Establish short-term objectives and long-term goals

3. Keep accurate training records and perform evaluations frequently

4. Always use proper technique and a spotter when needed. Safety is always a concern

5. Build in variety to avoid physical and psychological burn-out and over training

6. Make strength training fun, safe, challenging and injury free

For more ideas about creating simple effective strength training and conditioning programs check back here frequently or visit us at: www.hybridfitness.tv

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PAU for NOW

TAKU