Question regarding walking breaks as a marathoner

Mike asks

Lee, Firstly thanks for all the practical advice. Any thoughts on walking breaks for the "less than perfect" 4 and half hour marathoner who is overweight and doesn't quite do all training sessions? No lack of commitment, just realistic with fitting in work, family etc. Thanks

Lee's response

Hi Mike,

Every individual is different with age, ability, weight, back ground and circumstances. The key objective is doing everything in moderation to slowly absorb it all and the old quote of "Rome wasn't built in a day" is very true.
The question comes back to you of why do you do what you do? What are you trying to get out of this? What do you need to be better?
Starting out for beginners; walking is imperative as they are just not fit enough to last the distance. We encourage walking if they become tired as opposed to stopping as with walking your still moving forward and have not quit. So much of sport is mental and it is trying to make sure you are in control and not that little negative voice you often hear sometimes in the back of your head taking control.
When runners are doing sessions or repetition work, we encourage walking in between rather than just stopping and on their rest days, again we suggest keeping active with walking or some form of cross training.
So even though you are the "less than perfect four and half hour marathoner who is overweight and doesn't quite do all the training sessions", what are you running for? To be 100% honest, time is a number and you can improve on that and you may be over weight but you can lose that, so I see all positives so far.
Fitting in training is hard with work and family, I get that now that I have 3 kids and my wife is back at work and even though I don't do the volume that I used to do, I still make the time by getting up at 6am to train (used to be 8am) and getting the main and most important parts of my training done. I know as an elite athlete I should be doing more but at the moment, life is too busy and hectic and I try to make the best of my situation.
Do all the things to benefit you to keep moving forward Mike and even though it may be harder on you now and in the short term, it will benefit you greatly in the long term.
Keep up the good work,