Question of the week: Walk breaks?

Do you ever walk during a race or training run?


5 Responses

  1. When I do the speed trainings I DEFINITELY walk. I am not sure if it is age or inexperience and my body getting used to it but speed trainings really have a toll on me! I have to take a breather.

  2. Yes! Especially around mile 11.5 in a half. LOL But seriously, some people think walk breaks mess up their momentum, but they actually help me forge ahead stronger. I try to take a break when I really need it instead of when I’m just being lazy. Sometimes I plan them, but for the most part I take them when I need them.

    I also hate the notion that you have failed if you take a walk break. I tried to emphasize to the running starters that there is no failure in walking. I figure if Nike isn’t paying me then I can take a break. 😉

  3. Yes. Most ultra runners walk at least the uphills, and for long ultras (over 50 miles) many use run walk, typically 25-5.

    I didn’t walk in my first ultra which was on road in the UK, but the second was Mountain Masochist 50 mile which has a 5 mile climb in the middle, so running all the way was out of the question. One of the next was Catoctin – only 50k but much of the trail is unrunnable.

    But age and longer distances have made me rely more on walking. For my last ultra I, for the first time, built walking into my training, doing three runs of marathon length or longer at around 5 mph (12 min a mile), which I can manage with walking half the time, at least for 5-6 hours, so I used 15-15. Walking training really paid off as I became a much faster walker (around 14.20 a mile), indeed over taking runners whilst I was walking in the Potomac River Run.

    Come race day I maintained target pace running just 20 minutes in each hour for the first six hours, and 20-30 minutes an hour for the next 10 hours. I walked more during the night but resumed running with 15-15 once dawn broke.

    So, indeed, there is nothing wrong with walking

  4. I have! During the final leg of the Iron Girl triathlon, I walked up “Gatorade Hill” (a steep and punishing hill). As I walked, I wasd surprised as I passed several runners. At that point in the event, walking was much more efficient than running up that hill (which I think probably felt like running in place). Go figure!

  5. I usually walk some during training runs -particularly during speed work and on long runs. Some easy days I mostly walk with occasional run breaks thrown in ;-).

    During trail races, walk the hills can be more efficient. In fact, at Saturday’s trail race one of the runners commented on how fast I walked up the hills. I seemed to pass people walking up the long/steep hills and running down them, and people passed me when I was running uphill.

    Yep, nothing wrong with walking and it can certainly benefit your running and your race times.

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