I'll say the neutral thing, with tact!
I figure that however you get through 26.2 miles is your own struggle. If you walk it or you walk part of it, that is just great. If you are injured or have bad knees, or running isn't a good thing for you, why should you deprive yourself of the 26.2 challenge if you can safely do it another way?
If your goal is to run a marathon, then I'd be inclined to say that if you are able, you should shoot to run it all the way through and maybe only take the little couple steps of walk break when you are drinking gatorade at the aid points.
If you go out there to run a marathon and find you are having a bad day, then don't feel like a failure if you walk part of it. I know I've done this. I still finished. I felt disappointed (my goal was to run in a set time), but it didn't matter to my family and friends who treated me like I broke some kind of world record. When I would say, "Ugh, it was awful. I was almost 30 minutes off my goal and I had to walk here and there," they'd look at me in disbelief and say, "But it's more than 26 miles. The whole thing is insane. So what?"
As I mentioned on another post, I did a couple walk marathons for a charity. They weren't easy, either. I felt worse than I did after running. For one thing, my feet hurt. My feet never hurt from running. I had to soak them the next day.
Everyone has a different way of doing things. My only request is that, if you do do the run/walk thing or if you run with a group in a race, please don't form a block on the roadway when your watches start to beep and you slow to walk. It's really unnerving for the folks behind who are not slowing!
Bottom line: In the end, the marathon is a race. But only one person wins. For everyone else, it is a personal struggle and you should do it in your own way.
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