Simple, cheap and effective. Running includes quick walking, jogging, running and racing – it really doesn’t matter how fast or slow you are. Just find what works for you, by building up gradually.

Running can be great fun and very sociable – you can run with a friend, make new friends with a beginners group, go to your local parkrun, or even head to a running club. You certainly don’t have to enter a race to enjoy running – just put on a pair of trainers and get out there doing what you want to do.

Why is it good for me?

Running is good for your heart and strengthens your bones and tendons. Getting outside, or hitting the treadmill can be a great way to clear your head and relax.

How much does it cost?

Running is one of the cheapest sports around, as very little kit is needed to take part and there is no additional equipment, just some trainers and comfortable clothes.

Some running groups offer a taster session for free before committing to a membership.

What equipment do you need?

The one essential item are a good pair of trainers. These will make your running easier and more enjoyable.

Trainers can be purchased from any running or sports shop. Most will have staff that can advise you on the right pair for you – make sure they are comfortable. Prices start at around £50.

Getting started

Below are some links and details for some products and programmes to get you started.

Run Together has been created by England Athletics to provide fun, friendly, supportive and inclusive running opportunities for everyone in England.

Parkrun organise free, weekly, 5km timed runs around the world. Junior parkrun is a series of 2k runs for children aged between 4 and 14. Parkruns are open to everyone, free, and are safe and easy to take part in. Before you go along, register and get your barcode.

Parkrun in Cumbria:

Couch to 5K is a running plan for beginners and  has been designed to get you off the couch and running injust 9 weeks.