Since I've been running for a few years now and feel that I've learned some things over time, I thought I would share a few key tips if you want to start running:
I find that I run more often or make a point to run when I have a run to look forward to. No matter what level of running you are at, find a fun run or race near you to sign up for. This gives you something to work towards and to look forward to! Whether it's a 1 mile run, a 5k, a 10k or a half marathon, I am always more motivated to run when I know I have a race coming up!
While I'm running, I find it easier to run, and my run goes much faster when I am distracted. Make a good playlist on your iPod or phone to listen to during your run. This will keep your mind off the actual run, and in my case, it helps when I can't hear myself huffing and puffing. Another good distraction is a scenic route to run. This could be a nice trail with a great view or a neighborhood with some neat houses to look at.
Find a buddy to run with! You are way more likely to keep up your running routine when you are doing it with someone else. When you schedule to run with someone, you can't skip out on them. Also, having someone to run with is way easier than running alone. This also adds to the distraction as you can visit with them to make the run go faster, and the motivation, as you could sign up to do a race together!
If you are nervous about starting to run, take it step by step. Start with a distance or time, run that far, and then walk. There is nothing wrong with doing a run/walk interval until you are able to build up your endurance. As you feel more comfortable, slowly increase your running time and decrease your walking time in between until you are able to run the entire distance! I still do run/walk intervals sometimes after being a runner for a few years now. Sometimes that little walk break is all I need to give me the energy to finish the run!
And...depending on what part of the country you are in, now is a perfect time to start running as the fall season is upon us and temperatures start to cool off. I don't know about you, but I find it much easier and more relaxing to run in cooler weather!