Why I love the run/walk method

Today I embarked on my first training run for the Wine and Dine Half Marathon in November and it was hard! I’m sure if you read my blog you will have noticed that since completing the Caerphilly 10k a few weeks ago i’ve somewhat lacked motivation to continue running on a regular basis, it’s been a tough few weeks but i’m glad to have something to train for again to keep me on track.

I’ve decided to follow Jeff Galloway’s official rundisney Wine and Dine training plan along with his run/ walk method which i’ve been using intermittently since we started running at the beginning of the year. Today called for 30 minutes running so I set my gymboss interval timer to do 8 reps of 3 minutes running 1 minute walking which would take me to just over 30 minutes and also ease me back into things as i’ve barely covered over a mile on each run for the last few weeks.

I headed to the usual mile loop around the lake where it’s nice and flat and there are plenty of other runners like me huffing and puffing around. I turned on my nike+ app which was set to tell me when 30 minutes was up, hit ‘go’ on the gymboss and began my run.

IT WAS TOUGH. Did I already mention that? REALLY TOUGH, but I think it was more of a mental problem than a physical one, my legs and my breathing weren’t to unhappy but my mindset before I even began was that I just wanted the 30 minutes to be over!

I started counting my intervals. ‘Thats one down’ I would say to myself after the first beep to signal the end of 3 minutes running and the beginning of 1 minute walking. Then 2 and 3, until I was on 7 and 8 and then nike+ app lady blared out ’30 minutes completed’.

I’m convinced that counting the intervals and having those lovely walk breaks was the only reason I managed to complete 30 minutes and I think that’s why I love Jeff Galloway’s run/walk method! You are never THAT far away from a walk break – from a cool down period.

It’s like breaking it down into smaller pieces for my mind. My mind doesn’t like the idea of 30 minutes, but it can just about handle 3. My mind bolts at the idea of a 2+ hour half marathon…. but it can cope with 3 minutes running and 1 minute walking. I feel like I can go the distance when its broken down into smaller segments, when I know a walk break is not to far in the distant future.

I’d been floating between methods whilst training for the Caerphilly 10k. Some days i’d try to run it all, some days i’d run for a while and then walk when I felt like it, but without a proper structure like with the run/walk interval method, but this wasn’t good for my mind. Today with structured segments my mind felt like it could handle things. I remembered why I used to look forward to running rather than dread it.

I’m not sure I could run an entire half marathon without walking, but I know I can complete the distance with the run/ walk method. At the end of the day, no one is going to scold me for walking a bit (only my mind if I let it), and thank’s to rundisney’s inclusive nature the run/ walk method is encouraged to get people to that finish line and help them to love exercise, love running and become healthier versions of themselves. That is a train i’m happy to board!

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6 thoughts on “Why I love the run/walk method

    1. I do sometimes feel like I ‘shouldn’t be walking, especially if it’s a race, but really I doubt anyone else running cares, so yeah, definitely ego.

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  1. Never feel bad about walking! walk/run approach is totally legitimate! Here we have a very popular chain of running stores that instruct using the 10 and 1s for everyone from beginners all the way to marathoners. All about personal preference!

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  2. I love run/walk and we used it today in our 10km run in Leeds. I guess you do have to be a bit careful about not stopping right in front of other runners but other than that having a structure really helps mentally. I will need to practice taking a walk or even two out at the start because when everyone is still really bunched up walking just ins’t really feasible. I usually have my own little rule about not taking out walk breaks until I am over half way. If I feel ok once over half way I’ll take the odd walk break out. We have been running 2 minutes walking 30 secs but are going to try 2mins 30 secs running and 30 secs walking when we do our next maintenance run on Tuesday. Keep up the good work! You’re doing great.

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