1. Start slow. Keep your mileage low and allow for plenty of rest days (even when you think you don’t need it). Don’t compare yourself to other runners (especially bloggers), you don’t know how long they’ve been running and everyone’s body can handle different paces/distances.
2. Mix up your running surfaces. This helps prevent injury as pavement and other hard surfaces are tough on your body day after day. Alternatives: treadmill, trails, turf field, dirt paths, etc.
3. Sign up for a 5K race to stay motivated. Having a goal keeps your going through the hard runs, early mornings, and soreness. It makes it less tempting to give up because you are signed up for a race that you most likely paid an entry fee for.
4. Get the proper shoes for your feet. Running in the right shoes is so important. This is the one thing I wish I had known five years ago when I first started running seriously, it would have prevented a couple years of chronic shinsplints.
5. Warm-up, cool-down, stretch, and foam roll. Ah, the things we runners love to skip when we’re in a rush. But when we’re injured, we’re kicking ourselves for not paying more attention to it. A foam roller is a “poor persons massage” and I highly recommend investing in one.
6. Read. There is so much free information out there to help you get started with running. Some of my favorites include: Runner’s World, Women’s Running, Active.com, and of course other bloggers (for example, Sisters Running the Kitchen and Healthy Tipping Point)