I have used the Galloway method since I started distance running a few years ago. I used it while training for my second half marathon and absolutely loved it. Galloway Method is also known as Run Walk Run for those who are unfamiliar. The Run/Walk method would take your pace per mile and assign a specific run/walk ratio. I started with a 3:1 ratio (3 minute run, 1 minute walk) and even played around with 2:1 and 1:1. After talking to Jeff Galloway at the Princess Half marathon expo, he suggested that I try 30:30 (30 second run, 30 second walk or what I call 30-30’s). I did make character stops at Disney, so I can’t share a PR story behind this ratio—but I did like how I felt. I also used 30-30’s during the early part of the Walt Disney World Marathon. I think by using them in the beginning, it helped me stay strong to the end to complete 26.2 miles!
As a Jeff Galloway Blogger, I receive tips to share with my readers on ways to stay motivated and train for optimal performance. When I found out that Jeff Galloway introduced a NEW Run/Walk Strategy: The 30-second Walk Break, I was fascinated! I actually just started using 30 second walk breaks during training runs to get accustomed to taking shorter breaks. And then here comes Jeff Galloway and all of his running wisdom! This only confirmed that I was making the right decision. Below are details about the new Run/Walk strategy from Olympian Jeff Galloway!
Jeff Introduces a New Run/Walk Strategy
The 30-second Walk Break
Jeff Galloway’s Run/Walk/Run method was revolutionary for three reasons:
1 – Run/Walk/Runners felt better throughout the long run.
2 – Run/Walk/Runners recovered faster and got injured less often.
3 – Run/Walk/Runners went faster with the breaks than without.
Since his introduction of walk breaks in 1974, Jeff he has received feedback from hundreds of thousands of runners, allowing him to fine tune Run/Walk/Run to keep people feeling better, staying healthy, and running faster.
The greatest benefit of the walk break comes in the first 30 seconds.
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.
Here is a typical example of what happens with a 1-minute walk break:
A run/walk/runner averaging 10-minute pace in a marathon using 3 min/1 min might walk at a 15-minute mile pace for the first part of the race.
As fatigue sets in, that walk gets slower, and by halfway, the runner may be walking at 18 min/mi. 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.
Avoiding the Slow-down
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 Bottom Line
If you are in already using a 30-second walk break or less, you don’t need to adjust. If you are using an interval that takes a 1-minute walk break, keep the same ratio but cut your walk and run times in half. For example, a 1-minute/1-minute interval now becomes a 30-sec./30-sec. interval. It’s that simple.
In the past when I took walk breaks longer than 30 seconds, I did find that I slow my walking pace down…a lot! Taking shorter walk breaks keeps me in the game and focused. I’m grateful that I discovered the Run/Walk method because it has helped me achieve my goals and continue to set new ones! Also, did you know that Jeff Galloway and many others have qualified for Boston using his Run/Walk method? I may not desire to BQ (right now), but it’s great to know that walk breaks have been proven to work!
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Do you use the Galloway Method? What do you think of the new 30 second walk breaks? If you do use the Run/Walk method, what ratio do you use?