Couch to 5K

Breather walks and stamina - good or bad

Hi all,

First of all thanks to everyone here for being such a great supportive community!

I started C25K 2yrs ago year but had to stop due to an ankle injury. Started again last August and graduated in November. Then gradually started upping my distances because it seemd the thing to do. But although I managed 10k twice in the last month I have been demotivated because I have needed to take frequent walking breaks especially during the later parts of the run. I walk for about 10 to 15 seconds and take off again. So it's actually been 10k-...I do 2 short runs and one long run a week but need walking breaks in all.

Today I did the shortest run in my area which is 4.04K and was determined to NOT TAKE A WALKING BREAK and it worked. I started C25K to get healthier and stressing about metrics is probably not the best thing to do so I am trying to find my way back to the absolute joy of finishing a run with Laura's "Well done!" ringing in my ears.

What are your views on walking breaks? Does it affect the stamina aspect of a run?

4 Replies

There is no shame in stopping for a walk part way through a run. The metrics are useful for gauging progress, but should not be the main reason for running, otherwise you will become demotivated when, inevitably as you progress, it is more and more difficult to improve on times. My wife and I went for a 10k run/walk through the woods for our last run of last year, agreeing that we would run when we could and walk when we had to. We had a brilliant time careering through the woods like a couple of kids, covered in mud, but we allowed ourselves to stop to admire the view and have a breather every now and then,

You are still a relatively "new" runner and it takes time to build the stamina to get into the zone for 10k and longer runs. I have just got back from a 10k run which gave me a PB, but meant that I had to stop immediately my 10k was up, rather than run to my 5 minutes from home waypoint. I was totally K*******D.

If you keep it fun then you are far more likely to continue running. Keep running, keep smiling.


Well it all depends on what you are trying to achieve. I do take walking breaks and don't beat myself up- I am defo in for the running because i enjoy it - not that I 'failed" because it involved a bit of walking. Sometimes i walk because I am puffed out (running to fast for my lungs), sometimes quite frankly i am not in the mood - so I break the run up into 10 min sections ( i always feel better afterwards), a drink and sometimes I am just bored. but nonetheless i am always pleased afterwards when i have done a run- I feel better and as we up these distances - of course it feels more challenging.

You are doing more than you were a few months ago and you are doing great - be proud :-)


No shame at all in taking walk breaks can I suggest you have a look at Jeff Galloway books or website, he teaches Run/Walk/Run plans, very interesting read and has improved my stamina and distances, don't beat yourself up there are very few runners that run long distances without any breaks even if they only stop or walk at aid stations

1 like

I have actually done a run/walk/run training with a group who are going to do the LA Marathon in March. They go quite fast on the run parts and consequently finish in about 4,5 hrs which is quite good I think.

Thank you for the advice, suzybenj and IannodaTruffe as well, I will take it to heart.


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