Fartlek and increasing vo2 max

Hi all,

can I substitute a sort of fartlek session in place of intervals and get benefit/increase my vo2 max?

and if so what is the best ratio to aim for ie 2 mins v fast, 1 min jog recovery and repeat across 2 or 3 miles?



  • Fartlek is an interval session itself.

    What are you training for ? What is your history ? What do you run at the moment ?
  • Fartlek is meant to be unstructured - " 2 mins v fast, 1 min jog recovery and repeat across 2 or 3 miles" sounds like a very structured interval session that would help with VO2. It is not a fartlek but will help towards your aim

  • McFloozeMcFlooze ✭✭✭

    According to Daniels he reckons the first two mins of an interval are spent getting up to the VO2 max zone.  So therefore the most beneficial are intervals that are between 3 and 5 mins long (more than 5 mins is too stressful), less than 3 mins gives you not v much volume at VO2 max.  

    So you could do something based around that.  If you don't want too structured/more fartlekky could do varied bursts of between 3 and 5 minutes at faster than 5k pace. Recover til you feel like going again.   

  • Thanks guys, food for thought, maybe ill aim for 3 fast, 2 jog recovery..

    cougie, I'm kind of ticking over. Training is a bit sporadic at the mo. managing a lunchtime tempo of between 4-6m at 7'30 ish pace once a week. Run into work slow (3.5m) once a week and sometimes do parkrun Saturdays.

    want to get more benefit from the slow work run given my limited volume so hence the fartlek q..

    am aiming to get under 21 for 5k (current pb 22'20) sub 45 for 10k (race in 3 wks) and sub 1'40 half at great west half in oct (will train properly for this around 10 wks out).

    my history is that I've been running properly for about 3 years. 2011 first half in 2 hours. 2012 reading half in 1'54. This year reading half in 1'44 and London marathon in 4'06. 

    Longer term goal is for Edinburgh mara in 2015, sub 4 hours...

    cheers, will

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