If you had told me two years ago that I would be running a marathon this year I would have laughed in your face. Me? Running 5 km is hard for me, how on earth could I run a marathon? As I’ve mentioned before in my Running Journey post, I am not a natural born runner. Running is not something that I have always enjoyed or have naturally been good at. Running is hard work and has been something that has taken me years to learn to love.
Why am I telling you this? Because so many people when I tell them about my running are in awe and say I could never do that. And that’s simply not true! Now, I’m not saying everyone’s goal has to be a marathon or even a 10km run, but the fact of the matter is, if you wanted to achieve that goal, you could!
One of the biggest obstacles people face when thinking about long distance running is the amount of time. I always hear, “running for 2 hours, I could never”. But when talking with a friend recently, I mentioned my walk breaks and she looked at me in shock and said, oh you walk! There is an assumption that when I say I ran a half marathon that I ran the entire time. Well for me that isn’t true. In training for my most recent half marathon I started using the Jeff-Galloway Run-Walk Method. You can see my complete post on that here. After every 4 minutes of
running jogging, I take a walk break.
I have to admit, I was skeptical of the method at first. I mean sure it sound great that I get to walk after only 4 minutes of running but how was I ever going to achieve my goals? But I tried it out anyways and I have to say, changing to this method was the best thing I ever did. Running has become such a more enjoyable experience. Rather than thinking about the many miles/kilometeres I have to run, I only think about the next 4 minutes. I figure, I can do that, I can run four minutes. And then when I look down at my watch and have 2 minutes left, I think I could run a little faster for the next 2 minutes and then suddenly I’m walking again. For me, this process has helped so much with the mental game of long distance running.
I have to tell you a story of what happened during my last half marathon when I first used the run-walk method in a race. I ran with a lady the entire race. She ran the whole time and I did my run/walk. Everytime I would run I passed her and everytime I would do my walk break she would pass me. This continued on for the entire 13.1 miles. But in the end, I beat her across the finish line! That was truly the moment I realized that the run-walk method works. Not only are my runs more enjoyable, Im faster. I achieved a PR on that race, walking every 4 minutes!
Does walking during my races make me any less of a “runner”? Does taking walk breaks make my accompliments less impressive? Does walking mean that I failed? I think, absoloutely not!
If you’re someone who is on the fence about trying out running, I highly recommend trying out the Jeff Galloway Run-Walk method. And even for those who have been running for a while, like I said making this switch was the best decision for me and is truly what gave me the confidence to believe that I could complete a marathon.
Do you walk during runs? Have you ever tried the Jeff Galloway Method?