Self-pacing in interval training: A teleoanticipatory approach


  • This study was funded by a grant from the Sport and Recreation Council of New Zealand (SPARC) and was supported by Athletics New Zealand. The authors would like to thank Denis Owen, Linda Simpson, Rakai Timutimu, and Raewyn Walker for their technical support over the course of this study.

Address correspondence to: A. M. Edwards, PhD, James Cook University, Institute of Sport & Exercise Science, Cairns, Australia. E-mail:


The aim of the present study was to investigate whether the concurrent use of Rating of Perceived Exertion (RPE) and a new Perceived Readiness (PR) scale facilitates optimal interval training performance outcomes. Eleven competitive male runners completed outdoor interval track-running trials at a pre-set RPE. The PR scale was used to facilitate self-determined recovery, while minimum heart rate (HR) and work to rest ratio (WR) strategies were used as comparative conditions. Duplicate PR trial performances were similar but intercondition comparisons identified that the HR trial was significantly slower than both WR and PR conditions. There was no difference in performance between WR and PR, but recoveries for both PR trials were significantly shorter than for WR. Since the aim of interval training is to sustain performance with the shortest possible recovery time, the concurrent use of RPE and PR scales appears to be a useful psychophysiological technique to self- determine both work and rest in interval training.