Friday Fartlek Run: 3min/9min Power Test

Regardless of what distance you are training for, if you use a Power Meter you need to be doing regular testing to ensure you are training in the correct Power Zones for your current fitness. This session is a good training stimulus especially if you are racing short events, but the data it generates is valuable regardless of whether you are training for any distance up to and even longer than a marathon.

Each week I will be posting the Friday Fartlek Run Sessions that you can do to enhance your running. Fartlek is a Swedish term that is often used by runners and it means speed-play. See a previous post about training intensity (levels) to know how hard to work.

30min Power Test

  • 15min Level II WU;
  • 3min Level V (run this as hard as you can covering as much distance as you can in the 3min);
  • 5min Walk;
  • 10min Level I;
  • 5min Walk;
  • 5min Level I;
  • 5min Walk;
  • 9min Level IV (run this as hard as you can covering as much distance as you can in the 9min);
  • 10min Level II CD;
  • 10min Stretching

The warm up (WU) should be done at an intensity that is steady but not over consuming at Level II for fifteen minutes.

The main set is made up of a two hard efforts separated by some walks and jogs to recover prior to the next effort. The first effort is three minutes long. During this effort run as far as you can and as hard as you can for the three minutes.

After your three minutes recover for thirty minutes by starting with a five minute walk. Then jog at Level II for ten minutes, before another five minutes walk. Another five minute jog at Level II before the final five minute walk.

The next effort is for nine minutes at Level IV, once again run these nine minutes as hard as you can aiming to run as far as possible within them.

The Cool Down (CD) is at a low intensity jogging (Level II) for a minimum of fifteen minutes.

Finish with 10 minutes stretching to assist with the recovery.

Once you’ve completed the session download your power data and take your average power for each of the three minute and the nine minute efforts and add them together. Divide this total by two. Finally take 90% of this quotient to estimate your rFTPw value.

I did this session yesterday and averaged 356 Watts for the three minute segment and 343 Watts for the nine minute segment. Adding them together gives me 699 Watts, then dividing by two gives me 349.5 Watts. 90% of 349.5 Watts gives me an estimated rFTPw of 315 Watts.

This test was developed by the Stryd running power meter company and reported in Jim Vance’s book Run with Power.

If you would like further advice feel free to contact me.

I am the Head Coach & Director of Qwik Kiwi – Endurance Sports Consultant.

I specialise in assisting first timers and recreational athletes to achieve their sporting goals. I can be contacted at coachray@coachray.nz and 021 348 729.

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If you enjoyed this workout, here is a similar session I published 12 months ago.

Friday Fartlek Session: 5x 1km

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