1. You are never too old to start. Never.
2. The first step is getting out of the house. Start by walking and then try short run breaks here and there. Increase the running breaks until you run more than walk. Eventually you will run the whole distance. You can follow a beginners programme like couch to 5k which aims to get you running 5k in nine weeks. The key is to ease yourself into it, give your body time to adapt. LFR run a supported c25k program twice a year so keep an eye open for when the next session is due to run.
3. Always stay hydrated and drink plenty of water even on rest days.
4. Don’t be put off by thinking you’ll be slow or what other people think. It’s not about speed or pace at all in the beginning, simply enjoying running – you will have run faster and further than anyone still sat on the sofa.
5. Visit a running store and get some running shoes that are suitable for your foot shape and running style. Don’t be afraid to try on many pairs and to have your running gait analysed as this can be an essential step in avoiding injury. Don’t just buy the cheapest deal off the internet initially, speak to the people in the shop about all the different types of shoe and what they are for. They will be more than happy to talk to you and give advice.
6. Join a running club like LFR. Many have beginners classes, and it’s a great why to find other people in your area to run with. Having a run buddy makes going out on those cold winter nights a bit more bearable and you can offer each other encouragement and support.
7. Remember that your goals and objectives may be different from everyone else who runs. Keep it personal. Think about what you want to achieve, make a plan and work towards it.
8. Some runners prefer to always have an event in the diary to help with motivation. Working towards a race that you’ve paid to enter, will make you less likely to skip training. If a race event is not for you, remember that on Saturday mornings across the country, anyone can take part in Parkrun, a free 5k event at a park near you.
9. Join running communities on social media sites like Facebook and listen in on some of the running dialog. Pick up the tips you want, and ask questions where not sure. Runners are a kind crowd and they will be more than happy to help you.
10. Be patient. There will be good runs and bad runs. Not every run will be life-changing, and some will be difficult. Prepare yourself in advance and you stand a better chance when things get tough.