I set out to run without walk breaks today, for at least 1 mile or 2, and essentially ended up running 1-mile repeats with a 1-minute walk break between each mile. I really pushed myself to run each mile straight and ended up with pretty nice negative splits:
mile 1 = 11:44
mile 2 = 11:28
mile 3 = 10:19
I was really struggling during the last mile; my breathing was labored, yet controlled, and my legs felt like they were going to fall off, but I wouldn't let up on my pace. It felt really good, but it also served to reinforce why more frequent walk breaks are such a great idea.
Last Tuesday I ran the same course and I walked every half mile or so for a total of about 5 minutes (or ~5:1). The 3.1 miles took me 35:24 for an average pace of 11:25, with the pace of the running segments ranging from 11:33 - 10:19.
Today I only walked for about 2 minutes, and the 3.13 miles took me 35:34 for an average pace of 11:22.
I essentially had the same results with a lot more effort today, and a lot more residual aches. This is not the first time this has happened either, so I know it is not a fluke. I'm just not sure it is worth it to put that much stress in my joints for such little gain--just to say I can run a mile straight--though it's nice to push myself every so often and remind my body what it is like to run without walk breaks.