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Walking Isn’t Always Wimpy

Posted Mar 01 2010 12:00am
Now that you have started running, you just don’t want to slow down. However, if you are gearing up for a race or marathon, walking can actually improve your time if you do it right!

Even more experienced runners can be resistant to the idea that taking intermittent walking “breaks” during their run can actually help them improve their time.

As much as you may love it, the human body was not actually designed for running for extended periods of time without a break. By alternating running and walking you can extend the limits that your body may naturally place upon you.

Just Starting Out

By combining running and walking, even a beginner can train and complete a marathon. The walking break helps you feel stronger and recover during your run. It also helps you meet the main goal for a beginner – participation! Signing up and competing in a marathon is a great accomplishment, not matter what your time result may be.

Don’t let yourself be intimidated by a new experience. By using the walk/run method, you will be able to get a feel for what it means to participate and be able to better train for the next time.

Improve Your Time

Did you realize that by slowing down and regaining strength during a run, you can actually improve your time? Though intermediate runners can often be resistant to the idea, it has been shown to be true.

A short break from running can allow the runner who can usually only run a couple of miles to go even three or four miles without problem. Many runners tend to have difficulty pacing themselves. By overdoing it during your run, you can end up running significantly slower in the last leg of your race.

When using the walk break to improve your time, it is important not to wait until you feel fatigued. Measure out the time that you feel confident you can complete without fatiguing yourself. Experiment with the intervals. Make sure to use your timer to keep track when practicing and also to measure your overall time. Make your goal to use your walking intervals to improve your overall time for your run.

It can be helpful to run in a group when you are having trouble maintain a steady pace. Try joining a running club or a group exercise call like BOOTCAMP 619 to find people with your common interests.
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