Thining Out Loud Thursday: Racing, Confidence & Walking

thinking out loud

So I’m linking up today with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud Thursday.

at the start

That’s 14 (almost 15) races in 4 months.

When I first started running, I would sign up for races as a motivator to get out there and run during the week.  I knew that my race performance would suffer if I didn’t.

Once I started running half marathons, I followed a plan so I would run during the week to train for the race.

I ran in order to race.

Many runners don’t race much at all.  They just run. And that’s perfectly fine.

But I need to race. I enjoy it.  I am not sure that I would run if I didn’t race.

  • I think that I have lost my confidence! From September to March, this is what happened:

5K  PR– 27:11 (Run for the Roc -9/28/14)
10 mi PR – 1:38:45 (Perfect 10 Miler – 10/26/14)
15K PR – 1:33:23 (Stockade-athon – 11/09/14)
10K PR– 57:03 (Troy Turkey Trot- 11/27/14)
Half Marathon PR –  2:09:40 (West Palm Beach Half – 1/17/15)

7K PR – 44:24 (HMRRC Winter Series #5 – 2/2/14)
4 mi PR – 37:27 (Runnin’ of the Green – 3/14/15)
5 mi PR –  45:26 (Delmar Dash – 3/29/15)

Yup, that’s a PR at every distance!! Even after several serious injuries and being OLD!  What a confidence booster!


Since April, things have slowed down.  I have still been racing a lot but my times have been slow!  (That is slow for me.  Others would complain if they ran a mile in over 8 minutes.  Some would be thrilled run one in 10 minutes. We’re all different.)

I feel like I have gone backwards…to the time when I struggled to finish a 5k under 30 minutes and a half marathon under 2 1/2 hours.

Being the analytical person that I am, I have searched for the reasons…

–my feet started hurting during my April half (which was annoying to  say the least)
— I have cut back on my mileage (skipped runs)
–I have been running solo (no group runs)
–It is warmer (and humid)

All are very valid reasons.  I don’t expect PRs. But I would like to have a good race to bring my confidence back.

  • Galloway may have a point. Lately I have been reading his tips on several blogs. His most recent is about walking. If you have read any of my race recaps, you know that I DO WALK.

According to Galloway:

Compared to running constantly, the 1-minute walk break still results in runners feeling better, staying healthier, and going faster, but it can get even better! Limiting walk breaks to 30 seconds, or in some cases even less, while cutting the run time accordingly, gives all the same benefits, with even less fatigue and even faster times.


The greatest benefit of the walk break comes in the first 30 sec. Our heart rates come down, the running muscles relax, we catch our breaths, and the fatigue melts away. After 30 seconds of walking, we tend to slow down. 
As fatigue sets in, that walk gets slower… This means faster running is needed to stay on pace, which creates more fatigue at the end of each running segment, so the walk will get slower, and so goes the downward spiral at the end of the race.

I do not officially use the RUN/WALK method.  But I do walk.

When I first started running, my goal was to run a race without walking.  I was thrilled when I could.  However, I didn’t get faster until I allowed myself to walk.

Not one of my PR times above were accomplished without walking.

Of course, I wish I was strong enough to run fast and not have to walk. But unfortunately I am not.

Happy Running! Any thoughts today?  What do you think about racing, PRs and/or walking?


9 thoughts on “Thining Out Loud Thursday: Racing, Confidence & Walking

  1. I do think it’s a matter of not allowing enough recovery time, which leads to the not wanting to run, which leads to being undertrained . . . a vicious cycle. In simpler terms: burnout.

    Because my piriformis has been aching lately, I’m planning to run with the woman doing 4/1s this weekend. She better show up! I tried run/walk & didn’t like it, but maybe it’s time for a revisit.


    • I’ve tried it too. it’s too regimented for me. I like to walk when I want to. But I know runners who stick to it and love it. I think if I ever ran a full marathon, I would try it.


      • I always felt I walk so slowly it actually slows me down, even tho it’s not supposed to. Clearly you walk much faster than me because even with all that walking you’re still faster.

        I was thinking about my earlier comment & I think it’s just been too many long distance races for you – I think you seem happier when you’re running lots of 5ks & less halfs, but what do I really know?


  2. Interesting read today… just found you through your comment at Marcia’s Healthy Slice. I do normally do one-minute walk breaks but I think I may try limiting them to 30 seconds for a while and see if it makes any difference. Thanks!


  3. Everyone has peaks and valleys with running and racing. I got the two PR’s I was hoping for this year, but I don’t expect many with my age. Let’s face it, the statistics all show that after 40, runners slow down!


  4. I’m a proponent for the Galloway method. I used it successfully for my first half marathon (ran/walked a 2:06 on a hilly course after only running for 4 months). It really makes a difference if you start walking early in the race with pre-planned intervals.

    It’s hard to run in this heat and humidity! You’re doing great just getting out there!


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