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4 Fartlek Treadmill Workouts

Treadmill Running
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By Simon Gould

Fartlek workouts are speed play. They will get you running fast for a short amount of time and then have a jog or run at normal pace to recover. I give you 4 fartlek workouts here and all are designed for the treadmill. I've tested what's good about the treadmill. That is it's accurate speed and inclines.

All of these workouts last for 30 minutes which includes a minute warm up and cool down. So overall you'll be running harder for 20 minutes. This gives you a good foundation in which the result will be the ability to run faster in your normal runs. Feel free to adjust the speed to your personal choice. I'll put a summary of how to run at a certain time.

Fartlek workout #1

This workout will be running at speed for very short bursts. Rather like running outside when you'd run fast to the next mailbox. As always adjust the speed for your own ability. I want you getting into your anaerobic threshold with the maximum runs. There are a lot of instructions but that's the nature of the workout:

  • 00:00 - 05:00 - easy run warm up
  • 05:00 - 06:00 - normal
  • 06:00 - 07:00 - fast
  • 07:00 - 08:30 - normal
  • 08:30 - 09:15 - maximum
  • 09:15 - 11:15 - normal
  • 11:15 - 12:15 - fast
  • 12:15 - 14:15 - normal
  • 14:15 - 15:00 - maximum
  • 15:00 - 18:00 - normal
  • 18:00 - 20:00 - fast
  • 20:00 - 23:00 - normal
  • 23:00 - 25:00 - fast
  • 25:00 - 30:00 - easy run cool down

Fartlek workout #2

For this workout we're going to be using the treadmill incline. The running should be done at a normal pace and the speed stays the same throughout. The hard part of the workout will be keeping the same speed as the incline getting higher or lower depending on what part of the run you're at. This one's hard but rewarding:

  • 00:00 - 05:00 - 0% incline warm up
  • 05:00 - 06:30 - 3%
  • 06:30 - 08:30 - 1%
  • 08:30 - 09:00 - 5%
  • 09:00 - 11:00 - 3%
  • 11:00 - 14:00 - 1%
  • 14:00 - 15:30 - 3%
  • 15:30 - 16:00 - 5%
  • 16:00 - 19:00 - 1%
  • 19:00 - 21:00 - 3%
  • 21:00 - 23:30 - 5%
  • 23:30 - 25:00 - 3%
  • 25:00 - 30:00 - 0% incline cool down

Fartlek workout #3

This is a combination of the incline and changing of speed. It will require some patience in keeping up with the change of instruction. This workout will really exercise the back of the lower legs (calves). We've tried to make it easier to follow by only changing one aspect of the treadmill at a time. This one is complicated and will really give you a good workout:

  • 00:00 - 05:00 - 0% incline, easy run warm up
  • 05:00 - 07:00 - 3%, normal
  • 07:00 - 08:00 - 3%, fast
  • 08:00 - 09:00 - 1%, fast
  • 09:00 - 12:00 - 1%, normal
  • 12:00 - 12:45 - 1%, maximum
  • 12:45 - 13:30 - 3%, maximum
  • 13:30 - 14:30 - 1%, maximum
  • 14:30 - 18:00 - 1%, normal
  • 18:00 - 19:30 - 5%, normal
  • 19:30 - 20:15 - 5%, fast
  • 20:15 - 21:00 - 1%, fast
  • 21:00 - 24:15 - 1%, normal
  • 24:15 - 25:00 - 1%, maximum
  • 25:00 - 30:00 - 0% incline, easy run cool down

Fartlek workout #4

This is a pyramid routine. The speed goes up and down in a recognizable pattern with a real peak in the middle with a long maximum run. This occurs twice in the routine. As with all the workouts it's designed to push you to run faster. As with the others though you should still be able to breath through the very fast sections and not be exhausted by them. Here's the 4th and final routine:

  • 00:00 - 05:00 - easy run warm up
  • 05:00 - 08:00 - normal
  • 08:00 - 10:00 - fast
  • 10:00 - 11:00 - maximum
  • 11:00 - 13:00 - fast
  • 13:00 - 19:00 - normal
  • 19:00 - 21:00 - fast
  • 21:00 - 22:00 - maximum
  • 23:00 - 24:00 - fast
  • 24:00 - 25:00 - normal
  • 25:00 - 30:00 - easy run cool down

Conclusion

As with all speed work we recommend you do this once a week as part of your normal running schedule. Over time you will be running the fast runs even faster. Then you will reach a plateaux and this is normal. Don't neglect the workout then that happens. Your regular runs should now be easy to do. This is when you should increase the speed and it will feel natural doing it as your aerobic threshold will have risen.

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Meet The Author

Simon Gould

I'm Simon Gould. I've been around treadmills my whole life. From running on them at an early age to working in treadmill dept's of national stores. I've run outside and I've run on treadmills and I prefer running on treadmills. I still run on one nearly every day and love it.



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