Add This Tricky Speed Work to Your Long Runs.

When it comes to running, variety is important. A good running program includes slow runs , which build an aerobic base, as well as medium and fast paced runs, which help build speed and strength. However, as important as these long, slow runs are, they can seem monotonous. One way to break things up a bit and add some speed to your long runs is to include bursts.

What are running bursts?

Bursts are bursts of speed in the middle of a run . Unlike sprint workouts (in which you run fast and then walk while recovering), the goal of jumps is to run continuously but with short bursts of speed enabled. They are sometimes referred to as “fartleks”, Swedish for “playing for speed”. ”

The benefit of bursts is that they help you learn how to vary your speed, which is one of the hardest things to do as we tend to run at a certain pace . And the best part of bursts is adaptability. You can sprint at a critical speed pace that matches that of a 5k or 10k run – sprinting at that pace will help your fast twitch muscle fibers use oxygen more efficiently. Or you can jump at an aerobic pace , which can help improve your long-distance pace.

For any of these options, you need to do them at short intervals so that there is enough time in between for a full recovery. A good rule of thumb is to end your workout feeling like you could work harder. The goal is not to pump up your body, but to focus on steady, consistent gains.

How to include bursts in your long runs

What this looks like in the long run will depend on your current training and goals, but it doesn’t have to be difficult. First, warm up by running for 10-15 minutes. Then, at regular intervals, add a burst of speed. You can either calculate the surge or use landmarks like running towards a specific house or tree. Try to hold from 30 seconds to two minutes for each jump, after which you will return to your normal running pace.

The important part is to run long enough between each burst to fully recover. If that means doing only one or two bursts at the start, that’s fine. If done sequentially, they will add up.

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