Beginners Courses

Are you interested in taking up running or advancing further? Are you feeling daunted about joining a running club or unsure where or how to start? Then we welcome you to our 10-week 'Couch-to-5k' beginners training course, held each spring.

The courses are for absolute beginners and are adapted to a person’s ability. Alternatively, if you have run before, but need some help and motivation to restart and maintain your running, you will be most welcome.

Our aim is to help new and inexperienced runners achieve their running goals; whether that is weight loss, increased fitness, running their first race or simply progressing from walking to jogging.

What better way to discover the joy of running, meet new people, have fun and at the same time getting fit or fitter.

Supported by Qualified Run Leaders (England Athletics Leadership in Running Fitness qualification) offering tips and advice it's a great way to meet new people, have fun and get fit..and it's free!

2023 Beginners Course

This year, the 10-week course starts on 27th March 2023 at both Gangwarily Sports Centre, Newlands Road, Blackfield and Dibden Inclosure (on the long field parallel to the A326, near the pylon closest to the Dibden Purlieu roundabout).

If you are interested, perhaps want to discuss what's involved, is it for you, please email Chris Harris (see Contact us page) and she'll be more than happy to answer any questions.

View our 2023 Beginners Course poster:
Beginners Course poster 2023

Tracy's story

TracyTracy never realised that she would fall in love with running, she originally began running to improve her health and fitness.
Through the support of the Hardley Runners, Tracy has gained in confidence and is truly an inspiration to any new runners out there!
Be like Tracy!

Two years on, here's her update.

As you know I started the Hardley Runners' Beginners' Course in March 2019, age 50 years. Two years later here’s my update.

Just before lockdown I ran my first 10 K around a very hilly city of Winchester.

During lockdown I had little else to do except run, so I did!

In the month of May, I joined a challenge to run a mile a day, in fact I ran 60 miles!

In June we were able to run in groups of 6 and I was lucky to run with some of the club’s experienced runners.

At the end of one run I had committed to run a Half Marathon, after 9 weeks training on my 51st Birthday I actually ran 13½ miles and yes my first Half Marathon!

What was so lovely lots of club members meet me at the finish in Beaulieu and we celebrated with much welcome Cake!

During the summer I continued to enjoy my running and I joined the Hardley Runners Training Sessions for the first time. Training is great (although I was dubious) runners with all sorts of experience come together to improve their strength,  speed and endurance, in an atmosphere of fun & encouragement!

What is lovely about running is you can do it on your own, with a friend or as a group. The great thing about joining a club like Hardley Runner’s is the extra support & inspiration you receive. If I had been left to my own devices, I would probably have given up by know.

So whether you want to run a Marathon or achieve that 5k Run, I really would encourage you to take the first step & sign up for our next Beginners' Course.

For more information contact

Who are Hardley Runners

The Hardley Runners want to help EVERYONE on the Waterside achieve their running goals. We provide training, races and social runs for ALL running abilities, from those that want to WIN, to those that want FITNESS, FUN and FRIENDSHIP. Whether an accomplished runner, a lapsed runner or an absolute beginner, Hardley Runners is here for YOU!

Here are posters for previous years' courses to explain a bit more (Click on the picture to see it full size).

Beginners Course poster 2022 Beginners Course poster 2019

Feedback has been very good.  Chris is far too modest to mention this lovely comment on the Hardley Facebook page,

Hi All, I just wanted to say a massive thank you to Hardley Runners - Chris, Paul, Steve, Mel, Naomi, Kim.. The beginners course has been fantastic, and thanks to the brilliant coaching, advice and motivation I am now able to run 5k and enjoy it!!

I really hope to be able to keep improving and get to join the training sessions - what a great team you are, many thanks! x

Previous Courses

Here are progress reports and pictures of our previous courses which will give you an idea of what's involved and what fun they are.

What next?

The Next Step - How Hardley Runners are helping beginners

An extra group has been created within the training schedule for the Beginners on a Tuesday and Thursday evening. There will be ample support and guidance from the coach taking the session , plus the other three coaches Andy , Steve and Ian. Not forgetting Paul and of course all the Hardley Runners, several you have already met.

I would suggest you initially take part in one training night, choosing a session with a short run out, the track is ideal as you warm up when you arrive. Any concerns contact the coach who is taking the session (details on the training page) Alternatively you could travel to the nearest car park, but consider the safety aspects, do go in pairs. Always inform and the discuss with the coach taking that session.

Each session starts at 6.30pm, aim to try arrive 10 minutes before to introduce yourself to the coach. Please check the schedule carefully: normally we meet outside Applemore Recreation Centre or Hardley School track, here you can park inside the school gates (the first set after the funeral directors).

Good Luck, just keep running, Chris

The contents of this site are Hardley Runners unless otherwise stated.

Last updated 30-Mar-2023.

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