Definition of fartlek in English:



  • A system of training for distance runners in which the terrain and pace are continually varied to eliminate boredom and enhance psychological aspects of conditioning.

    ‘Also called fartlek training, intervals are used by competitive endurance athletes for improving speed and conditioning.’
    • ‘The basics of fartlek is to vary your training routine, have fun and invent new things to do.’
    • ‘This weekly program devotes four days to recovery training and two to aerobic and threshold training, via fartlek or ‘speed play’ exercise.’
    • ‘In phase three, formalize your fartlek training by replacing it with strict intervals.’
    • ‘On a specific route, landmarks can be used to change speed and direction and drills, such as the crocodile, back to front and fartlek, thrown in to add variety.’



/ˈfärtlək/ /ˈfɑrtlək/


1940s from Swedish, from fart ‘speed’ + lek ‘play’.