It’s not always easy being a runner who uses run/walk intervals. I seriously can’t find people to run with. because most runners just loathe run/walk. There are times where I wonder if I really still need to “run” that way.
I started out with run/walk
When I began training for my first half marathon, seven years ago, I chose to train using run/walk intervals. Except I didn’t have a GPS. Or a smart phone. It was hard to really time those intervals and I gave them up.
Walk every mile
Then I moved to just taking a walk break every mile. It gave me time to eat and drink.
New watch . . .
. . . back to run/walk. I finally had a watch capable of doing intervals — which seems to really work for me. I’ve gotten faster. I’ve stayed mostly injury free (there are aches, but aren’t there always?). Having a walk break coming up in a short amount of time gives me something look to forward to.
. . . but what if I just ran?
Run/walk intervals do have their drawbacks; doesn’t everything? I’m running relatively fast during the run portion — usually faster than the people I line up with. Which means I’m often trapped behind people who run slower than me, but then I walk and they get ahead and . . . you get the idea.
The Freihofers Training Challenge follows the Couch to 5k program. Which involves running with no walk breaks towards the end. And I did that. Granted, most of the time I was also running at a slower pace than is normal for me. Much slower, sometimes. Still, I worried about injuries by not using intervals.
You know what? I’m okay. It didn’t slow me down in my own runs, either. So it brings me back to something I’ve been wondering for a long time: what if I just ran? Would I get faster? Would I be slower? Would it be more enjoyable? Less?
One other drawback of run/walk for me is that almost very few (as in, almost none) of my running friends use it. Even in a group with people who are close to my pace, I end up running on my own.
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it
That’s what I keep coming back to. Knock on wood, running is going well. Some days I run paces that surprise me but don’t wear me out. We won’t talk about the other days. 🙂
Talk to me. Leave a comment or answer a question:
Do you find it easy to find running buddies?
Have you ever tried run/walk intervals?
Did you stick with them, if you tried them? If you didn’t, why not?