This is a loaded topic, I know. So let’s get right down to business and talk walk breaks.
Are they good? Are they bad? Should run/walkers be chastised?
Like I said, it’s a loaded topic.
Can We Be Real for a Minute?
Most runners have had to take walk breaks during a run/race at some point.
That’s just a fact.
Even those of us that hate taking walk breaks, and feel almost like we are cheating if we stop to walk/rest during a race, have taken one during a long run/race.
So before you get all high and mighty on those who use the run/walk method for their training and racing strategy, I just wanted to point that out.
Why the Angst About Walk Breaks?
I wish I had a good answer for this question.
There are some in the running community that do believe that stopping to walk during a race does make you less of a runner and that you are somehow less deserving of calling yourself a half marathoner/marathoner/ultra marathoner if you walk during a race.
I just can’t wrap my head around this logic, especially when some of the guests that I’ve had on the show in the past have run some times that I would love to be able to run while taking strategic walk breaks during their races. (Specifically, Bruce Van Horn and Tim Price)
My Take on Walk Breaks
I’m in the camp that says you do what you need to do for your training/racing, but when it comes to my own training and racing I hate taking unscheduled walk breaks. It makes me feel like I didn’t do enough training to be ready for the race I’m running.
But here’s the thing, I strategically stop to walk during just about every race I run. If I’m in a race where I’m going to take in fluids along the way, I’m going to walk through the aid station to avoid spilling water/Gatorade on myself and/or choking while trying to drink on the run.
So what makes what I do different from someone that runs for 5 minutes and walks for 30 seconds? Or walks for 30 seconds after every mile? Or runs 1 minute and walks 1 minute?
Nothing really. I’ve got my strategy and they’ve got theirs.
At the end of the day, you do what you need to do to get to the finish line and I’ll do the same.
And once we get there, let’s have a beer and shoot the shit for a bit after congratulating each other on a job well done.
Where Do You Stand on Walk Breaks? All In? Not a Fan? Straddling the Fence with Me?