Yorkshire Marathon Training: Week 1 – Tuesday

Fartleks were the order of the day today and that’s as far as I had got with the entry in my training plan, just the one word – “Fartleks”. So how did I get on?

Officially, I started my 10-week marathon training plan yesterday – but Monday will usually be a rest day. So yes, I started my training plan with a day of no running.

Today I knew I was going to be doing a Fartlek session but when I checked my (hastily cobbled together) plan all it said was that – “Fartleks”. So I decided an hour of them would be about right (maybe 6 or 7 miles).

What are Farleks?

Fartlek means “speed play” in Swedish. Essentially it’s a form of interval training but not as rigid as doing set distance intervals. Instead you “play” with speed. Randomly speeding up and slowing day with different levels of intensity. I tend to use objects ahead of me such as telegraph poles, street lights, benches, gates or random shadows across the road if desperate.

Sometimes I’ll go flat out over a shorter distance, such as between two street lights, and sometimes I just speed up for a longer section. For example, this morning between two villages the speed limit goes to the national speed limit then back to 20mph so I sped up to 6:30min/mile pace between those two signs.

I quite enjoy a Fartleks session if I am honest. They should feel tough and you should finish feeling like you’ve worked hard. Today’s run was no exception.

I head off to Wales for work for a couple of days now so my training will continue while on the move. Factoring this into my marathon training is going to make it a little tougher.

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