A Life Changing 10K With Jeff Galloway

It’s no secret that I have a love/hate relationship with running.  I still feel like a fraud because I’m so damned inconsistent with my running.  It’s been hard to get back in the groove since Ragnar and Live Ultimate with Wild Boy but wow, did the run the run that ended FitBloggin2014 change my world.


Every FitBloggin’ ends with a run – a 1 miler, a 5K or a 10K.  Last year, I met one of my favorite people, Carrie@FamilyFitnessFoodduring the 5K.  We were both taking it a little slow and wound up chatting most of the way so in my mind, it was a successful run.  I planned on running the 5K this year until it was announced that the 10K route was going to be over the Savannah Bridge (I love me some bridges) and was going to be paced by Jeff Galloway!


Yeah, that Jeff Galloway, the Olympian, official Training Consultant for the runDisney race series, Runner’s World columnist and developer of the Run-Walk-Run method.  Jeff gave a pep talk to all the runners before we set out to do our runs and took pictures with everyone who asked.

Jeff Galloway, FitBloggin', 10K, Savannah Bridge, runDisney

Jeff Galloway and me in my Ragnar shirt for motivation

Leading up to the run, I was nervous.  I tried to get Shannyn@FrugalBeautiful to join me on the 10K but she chose the 5K instead.  I did get her and the lovely Kelly@NoThanksToCake to take a quick selfie with me before we all went on our separate runs though.

FitBloggin, run, 10K

Pre-Run gathering and selfies with Kelly@NoThanksToCake and Shannyn@FrugalBeautiful


The 10K started with a large group but those quick ladies like Allie@VitaTrain4Life, Sarah@RunFarGirl and Jesica@rUnladylike left a small group that got to actually run (well, Run-Walk-Run) with Jeff and his lovely wife Barb for an entire 10K distance.


Stephanie@FoodFitness4Real and I were absolutely geeked out at our good fortune to actually cover a distance with the Galloways.  I had never purposefully done the Run-Walk-Run method (vs. the run and then take walk breaks when I can’t keep up the pace) and I’ll admit that I was a bit hesitant to try it.  Running has always fueled a “don’t stop” attitude in me that makes me feel bad when I need to walk.  However, when Jeff told me that he has been using Run-Walk-Run without injury for over 30 years, I figured there must be something to it (especially with as many times as I’ve been injured).


Our Run-Walk-Run intervals were for 15 seconds each.  I was surprised that the short bursts of power alternated with periods of light recovery allowed for what felt like greater sustained effort for a longer period of time.  The sustained effort certainly came in extra handy when the Savannah Bridge offered this course:


Savannah Bridge, 10K, run, Jeff Galloway

Check out the ascend of the Savannah Bridge as Ashley@FierceForwardForLife and Jeff Galloway approach.


I’ve done my fair share of bridge runs but this one was definitely steep.  I felt the intimidation creep in when I saw that the top of the bridge was touching clouds (look at the photo again)!  It certainly didn’t help matters that it was ridiculously warm and swampy humid at 7:30 in the morning.


I kept at the Run-Walk-Run pace and at one time I was running in step with Jeff and asked him for his advice about running up hills.  He said to try to almost not have your feet touch the ground, to glide a little.  We chatted and ran and chatted and ran.  As we ran, I heard Kate Bush singing in my head “be running up that road, be running up that hill“.


Kate Bush, 10K, Savannah Bridge

That’s me in the orange leggings “Running Up That Hill”.


Savannah’s a beautiful city and I’m so glad that I got the chance to see some of these amazing views while running up the bridge (why I didn’t take any coming down, I’ll never know).


Savannah Bridge, running, 10K, Jeff Galloway


I ran a good portion of the way back with Jeff’s wife, Barb,  and we talked about running, our children and about the research about how regular exercise (including running) has proven positive effects on the brain.  I don’t often get the chance to run with someone and I forgot how much different it is to run and have a meaningful conversation with another person (I talk plenty to myself while I run).


Before I knew it, we were back at the hotel just about 6.2 miles later.  When I looked at how much time elapsed, I noticed the time was slower than my normal 10K – but not by much.  What was different though was the way that I felt.  I felt great!  My back was a tiny bit achy but that was it!  It sounds ridiculous but a tiny ache was nothing compared to my recent after run feelings (crap would sum those feelings up nicely).


RunDisney, Jeff Galloway, 10K

Happy FitBloggin’ Run-Walk-Run 10K faces


I got back inside the hotel for breakfast and I couldn’t contain myself.  I was overwhelmed with how good I felt.  Maybe it’s a little too self-congratulatory, but I was ridiculously proud of myself for not only completing this unexpected 10K (in the crazy heat and humidity – thank goodness for cloud cover) but for finishing it strong!  I was a jumble of emotions that I actually had to go to the bathroom and cry a little bit.  I‘ve been known to cry on my runs but not necessarily after them.


This 10K has changed me.  I went on a modified Run-Walk-Run 5 miler after FitBloggin’ and I felt great!  For a long time I’ve been battling some running demons and maybe adopting a Run-Walk-Run style will be the shift I need –  both physically and emotionally.

Post 5 miler post FitBloggin'

My post FitBloggin’ 5 miler after photo


There’s a half marathon out there waiting for me.  I’ve trained for 4 half marathons in as many years and injury has given me a DNS for all of them.  Maybe 2014 will be my half marathon year, you never know.


What’s your running ritual that keeps you motivated?


  1. says

    I seriously count the 2013 Fitbloggin 5k as one of my favorites as well. I so missed you and everyone else this year. And I’m a firm Galloway runner and have been for a while. although maybe I’m doing it wrong with longer intervals. But as soon as I can run again, I’ll stick with that plan.

    So glad you’ve been inspired. And glad the purposeful intervals save your back. And so happy you got to find a bridge.
    carrie@familyfitnessfood.com recently posted…Race Recap – just living vicariously through my kidMy Profile

  2. says

    The Jeff Galloway method has changed everything for me. Running is now enjoyable and I am is training for my first marathon. I never thought I would do that but his method have me the confidence. And I’m injury free, which is huge for me! I’m glad you are realizing how great this method is and good luck with a first half marathon!
    Jen @ pretty little grub recently posted…Calgary Stampede Wrap-UpMy Profile

    • says

      Jen: Thanks for the support for the Galloway Method. I wish you tons of luck for your first marathon. I did my one and only 26.2 back in 1999 and did a few half’s leading up to that but then I hated running and took a long time off. Once I started again, I trained for 4 half marathons and have been injured every.single.time. I’m hoping that with this method, maybe I can reach my goal of another half.

  3. says

    Ack! this made ME want to cry because I am so happy for you.I can’t count the number of “breakthroughs” I’ve had at fitbloggin! The Jeff Galloway method is one I have adopted as well, since I have never run a 10k I am registered for one in september and will be using the galloway method. I even ordered his books :) I am super excited for you and your shift.
    Nellie @ Brooklyn Active Mama recently posted…July 4th BBQ, First Experience with Chucky Cheese & 10K TrainingMy Profile

  4. says

    That’s so cool! So run/walk/run is 15 seconds of running followed by 15 seconds of walking and then 15 more seconds of running (for a total of 30 seconds because then you start the next run/walk/run segment)? I might try this with some of my family members because they really need to get in better shape and this seems so manageable. How fast was the running pace?
    Britt@MyOwnBalance recently posted…Joyful JulyMy Profile

    • says

      It’s 15 seconds run, 15 seconds walk then repeat – at least that’s what we did during this run. I can’t say that I know a ton about the Galloway method but I definitely believe it is a method that can be embraced by even the most novice of runners. I’d peek at the Jeff Galloway website for beginners (I know he even has an app available). This interval worked for me but I know that some people use the run for 3 minutes and walk 1 minute or some sort of combination like that. I believe the pace came out to be around 11- 11:30 min/mile which is slower than I’d like to be but the fact that I felt great throughout and had no recovery effects the next day, I’m definitely going to explore this option further.

  5. says

    So far I’ve resisted the intervals approach and at the 10k, I just ran. That’s my usual MO -run until I feel like I need walk break, then run again. 15 second intervals just sounded too close together to me. Maybe my total 14 miles would have gone easier had I tried the intervals for the middle 6 miles. Who knows.
    Bari recently posted…Meal Monday: Cranberry and Kale Turkey Burgers #recipeMy Profile

    • says

      Jeff and Barb were incredibly sweet and smart people. Getting the chance to run with them was incredible and I’m looking forward to incorporating their method into my future running.

    • says

      The intervals of Run-Walk-Run can really be anything (from what I understand). Barb Galloway said her son only recently used the 3 min run/1 minute walk method for a half. I liked the 15 second intervals for this run but I’ll admit that I’m finding it hard to find a device/app to incorporate to do the small intervals on my own. My RunKeeper will give me 1 minute intervals as the smallest and honestly, I can’t think about buying a watch or an external beeper sort of thing in addition to my iPhone, my earphones and my fuel/waterbelt.

      Once Spawn arrives and you’re up for your first postpartum race, we should coordinate running together.

  6. says

    I ran the 10K and am so glad you chose to challenge yourself! Jeff Galloway was super nice in person. I’ve been trying to convince my boyfriend who doesn’t run to use his method. Yay for you getting some running mojo back and here’s to many more lovely runs this year for you!

    • says

      Lauren: It was quite an experience. Thanks for the good running love and I look forward to getting to know you (and your running – 14 miles at FitBloggin’ was impressive)! PS – I think Couch to 5K also uses some form of Galloway for your boyfriend.

    • says

      Amanda: It was quite an amazing experience! I hope I’ll be able to see you again in Denver for FitBloggin’ 2015! Looks like you’ve been a bit busy. Hope your trip was amazing. I was vicariously traveling through your Instagram photos.

  7. says

    i’m so in awe! I wish I could have had the same opportunity, but alas I too couldn’t make Fitbloggin this year! Jeff’s programs are awesome and I’ve often used techniques that I’ve learned over the years. Even recently (couple months ago) I did a run/walk (4 min/1 min) for 12K just to get me through it (I was suffering with some back issues but also psychologically didn’t feel up to the training, which was to prepare for a 24K bridge run in France) and it really did the trick. Jeff has gotten so many people to experience running and becoming an athlete regardless of speed or “placing” in a race. So, yeah, a little bit jealous to say the least!!!
    Renée @pinkypie recently posted…June Wrap UpMy Profile

    • says

      It was a pretty amazing experience. Glad to hear it helped you with your recent run. The experience is inspiring me to try it for a longer distance than I’m used to but we’ll see….

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