Will Galloway run/walk be successful for me?

When I first began to run, I started with Couch to 5k, as many runners do. If you’ve been thinking about getting started with running but don’t know where to start, trust me, C25K is a good way.

Then I eventually ran a 5k. And another. And decided to train for a half marathon. I explored the Galloway Method. Only it didn’t really seem successful for me and I abandoned it for my own loosey, goosey run/walk plan.

Garmin Vivoactive
Garmin Vivoactive

Why wasn’t Galloway successful for me?
When I started to run, I didn’t have a GPS watch. I didn’t have a smartphone. And therefore I also didn’t have a timer.

I did have a rather cheap sports watch. It told the time and you could use it as a stopwatch. So basically I had to keep looking at the watch to time my intervals, and I was never quite on time, so to speak.

I was also using something like 3/1 or 4/1 (run 3 minutes, walk 1).

In the end it just seemed to complicated and I went with my own plan: sip some water and take a walk break every mile. That got me through a lot of half marathons. 10, to be exact.

Stretching My Endurance
When I started running this year, I decided I would work on my endurance. I wanted to see how long I could run without having to walk at all. Surely fewer walk breaks would build up my endurance.

It seemed to work — I was running 5 and 6 mile runs without walking at a decent pace for me. My first half of the year was a PR (by a little).

Re-enter Galloway
Then I read a few blogs about decreasing the length of the walk break in the Galloway method. Specifically, that most people slow down after 30 seconds, so taking a 30 second walk break instead of a full minute would actually result in better times.

So I decided to revisit Galloway and see if it would be successful for me this time. I still didn’t have an interval timer on my Garmin, but I did find an app on my Ipod I could use (although being free, it was a little wonky).

And then I got my #Gaminvivoactive, and that does have a timer. Ah yes, life got much simpler after that.

I can’t say that I’m following Galloway exactly. I don’t do a magic mile (mile time trial every month or so to check your pace). I just picked 4/30 (4 minutes run, 30 seconds walk) out of thin air. But this time around, Galloway seems to be successful for me. My speedwork feels like maybe, maybe, it’s a bit faster. My long runs are a bit faster. All that could just be because I’ve been running with others, of course.

Galloway is supposed to help prevent injury, and we all know I struggled with my IT Band this summer. But I also ran 9 & 10 miles and felt great. Like I could keep running. The day after running 10 miles I couldn’t even tell I’d run a long run.

I’ve had good runs like that without Galloway, of course. The real test will be my upcoming half marathon. I am hopeful for cooler temps and a PR.You never know what race day will hand you, but I am hopeful.

Do you take walk breaks while running? Are they timed or just when you feel you need it?

I’m linking up with Amanda at Running with Spoons for her:

Thursdays are for thinking out loud

21 thoughts on “Will Galloway run/walk be successful for me?

    1. I’ve read a few of his books, but it’s been a while. I believe the idea is that walk breaks (even though 30 seconds is super short!) help prevent fatigue, thus allowing you to have more energy.

      I do know quite a few people who use Galloway & swear by him.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I did the C25K when I started running earlier this year as well, and I really liked it. I’ve managed to build up a pretty good base where I don’t feel like I have to walk anymore, but there are definitely still days when I need to take a few breaks. They’re pretty random though and I’ve never bothered timing them.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Glad that you are seeing improvements! I think its all about figuring out what works for you…its helpful to learn different methods and the reason behind them, but every runner is different. When I coach run/walkers I usually encourage them to use timed walk breaks on some longer workouts but I also include shorter runs where I try to get them running as long as they can to build endurance.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I have a friend who is training for her first half marathon and she is doing run/walk! It seems to be working for her! I think if I ever decide to do a full marathon (I only do halfs now) I might incorporate some run/walk into my training.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I only do it when I run with you. I know that it works for a lot of people. I just run until I can’t. Then I walk until I feel like running.

    But your paces are even and you feel good about your runs. You should continue it.

    I hope it brings you success on race day. But then again, there are so many other factors.


  5. I have never heard of the Galloway Method, but if it works, good for you!!! It is such a great sense of satisfaction when you achieve your goals. I walk if I feel like it because ultimately it is my run and I don’t care. Have a great day

    Liked by 1 person

  6. As you and so many others, I began with the Couch to 5K plan and loved it, but when I investigated the site’s training for 10K I wasn’t thrilled. Several people suggested Hal Higdon, so I checked it out and like it very much for its set up, for Higdon’s philosophy and his common sense approach. That said, I also know a lot of people who love Galloway’s run/walk plan, and as I contemplated training for ten miles and now a half marathon, I investigated his as well. I found it way too complicated for me, unless like you did I just loosey-gooseyed it with a 4/1 or 4/30.

    In the end, I decided to stick with Hal Hidgon and am using his half marathon for novices. He encourages walking when you need to, but it is not organized in the way Galloway is. I plan to walk a minute at each mile after 10K, sort of my own hybrid Higdon/Galloway plan. As you say, whatever works for you. I hope it does.

    Good luck to you, too. It seems as though this year, with strength and determination, you have made great strides forwarded (pun intended).

    Liked by 1 person

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