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My road to Paris…

But a challenge is a challenge and yes I became excited at the thought of achieving it and proving that a long distance walker can become a speed walker too!

On 1 September I was challenged by Nina. As an employee of Walk the Walk for nearly 7 years I am used to being challenged but did not guess what was coming. I have walked endurance events and climbed mountains – “how about speed”? she asked. How about The Paris Marathon?

Eeek I thought – that’s a fast one – 5 hours 40 minutes or no medal! I had once hit 5 mph over a 3 mile distance but found it really hard. Nina advised plenty of interval training – not my favourite. For those of you unfamiliar with interval training this involves walking as fast as possible for 2 minutes, then slowing down for 2 minutes and repeating this cycle. I think it is the repetitive side that gets me. But a challenge is a challenge and yes I became excited at the thought of achieving it and proving that a long distance walker can become a speed walker too!

I decided straight away that if I was to succeed then technique was to be the key. So at first I would concentrate on posture, core muscle strength and holding that imaginary £50 note between my buttocks while striking out with my heels and pushing off with my toes. If this could become a habit then it would be easier once I added in the speed and the pumping of the arms (I had never really been disciplined enough to do this properly before).

I also treated myself to a pair of new Salomon walking shoes, so the only excuse for failure would be me!

Next Step – see just how fast I can go over 3 miles – 37 minutes – wow I can do this!

The plan for the rest of September was therefore plenty of stretching and steady walking with good technique. However, after the success of the 3 mile walk, curiosity got the better of me – could I maintain the pace over 4 miles! A disappointing 56 minutes told me serious training would be the way forward.

Sue

Look out for Sue’s next blog on how she is getting on with her interval training and find out more about the Paris Marathon here

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