Monday, 20 April 2009

"Run walk run" - still running faster

Following my last post when I was talking about the potential for run-walk-run to give better times than running alone, my last two 'runs' were "run-walk-run"s... If that makes sense.

And the times I ran it in seem to imply that, for The Fat Runner at least, that it is faster to break the run with a walk.

Again, over the same course that I'd been running on my holiday, my times for the last two runs were around 23 mins 20 seconds - over a minute faster than running alone.

I found an interesting post providing the counter view to the benefits of run walk run. The author, very persuasively I think, claims that run-walk-run works best for out of shape runners.

Well to me that's fine. I am an out of shape runner. I'm The Fat Runner for goodness sake!

What I know from the run walk run method is that it allows me to do the following:

> Run without injury: Admittedly it has only been a bit over a week, but it's worth noting that I ran every other day (and I'm now 103kg unfortunately) with very little soreness (and none towards the end of the week). And this was after not having run for over a month!

> Run faster: My times seem to bear out the fact that I run faster when I walk...

> Work on running style: Perhaps this shouldn't be an issue for me at the moment, but one of the things I notice is that when I do run walk run, the 'run's are much closer to 'run's than 'jog's... My feet come further off the floor, I feel myself able to push off with more force, I feel like there is more of a flowing rhythm going on, rather than the 'plod, plod, plod' I get when I don't put the walk breaks in

So, while I'm sure the other author is right (and on another post, one of her readers makes the valid point that "funny thing I don’t see Tergat and Gebresalassie taking these walking breaks"), run walk run seems to work for me.

So my question to you is, what is the etiquette for using run walk run in races. Will I seriously annoy other runners if I continually overtake them, just to walk for a bit and let them overtake me? What are your thoughts?


Kch said...

The most important thing us to do what works for you. If run/ walk is getting you the results you want, I say keep of up!