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Now gyms, yoga studios and swimming pools are closed, running is a popular choice of exercise. It’s also a great way to enjoy some fresh air and explore the local area.

Getting started can be overwhelming. How often should you run? How far should you go? How fast should you run?

I think the BEST way to start running is with the NHS Couch to 5K plan. This takes you from no running to running 5k continuously in about 9 weeks. It took me a lot longer than 9 weeks to finish the plan but you might be more dedicated than I was!

The plan is free and easy to follow. You can use a podcast or free app to talk you through all the steps.

Google “NHS Couch to 5K” for all the details or follow this link: https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/exercise/get-running-with-couch-to-5k/

As a general rule we suggest you run 2-3 times a week and allow at least 1 rest day between runs. Make sure your running shoes feel comfortable and are laced up securely.

A common mistake is going too fast! You may be pushing yourself too hard and running too fast, try to settle into a nice relaxed pace where you can still breathe. Sometimes running to music can help with this – Spotify has some really good running playlists.

I also enjoy the Zombies Run app. The more you run the more of a zombie story you unlock. The app also has some nice training plans.

Finally, the Runners World website has a wealth of information and training plans.