By Rachel Grunwell

Do you feel unfit but wish you were "run-fit"? I've been on this journey and want to help.
I'm the ambassador for one of New Zealand's most well-known events, the Rotorua

Marathon, next on May 4, so, I want to inspire a beginner runner to follow in my footsteps with an epic giveaway.

I've teamed up with the marathon crew to run a competition to give away a pair of Asics run shoes and also a free entry into the Rotorua Marathon event. The winner can choose to enter any distance they like.

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They can opt for either the 5km fun run, 10km, half-marathon or full marathon. This will
give the winner a run goal to work towards to uplift their fitness. I'll be running at the event too.

You can enter the competition on my social channels — either the InspiredHealthNZ Facebook page, or Instagram.

By the way, I'm not an elite runner; I'm a mum who has gone from being unfit to fit and so I "get" the journey. Running has helped me to feel fitter and healthier than I've ever been. I'm passionate about sharing advice to help others.

I'm like most runners: I'm not out there to win. I just want to keep fit and healthy and signing up for an event helps with motivation. I started running six years ago and back then I did more of a walk/plod with a lot of puffing. I've since progressed to being a marathoner. So, if I can run, anyone can. Actually, I know anyone can. I've since qualified as a coach and I help clients to lose weight, get fit and feel healthier.

Five beginner run tips
1. Start your run journey slow and easy. Be kind on your body. Going too fast early on can cause stress and make it less fun.
2. Get a pair of running shoes for your foot strike so you can support your feet if they need it.
3. Do a short walk, plod or jog two to three times weekly to get started. Your body needs time to strengthen to this new sport and this is a good amount to start with.
4. Get a run coach who specialises in helping beginners — like me. Email me if you want to talk about your goals and get an individualised plan. I can help you get to your goal smarter: rachel@inspiredhealth.co.nz
5. Sign up for an event like the Rotorua Marathon with a mate. You can motivate each other to train. It's a cool strategy to aim towards looking your best this summer.

Ps: All 11 disabled athletes who ran the New York Marathon through the Achilles charity returned home with medals — and smiles. I was lucky to be amongst them as an ambassador for the Achilles charity. Congrats guys!

• Rachel is a wellness expert, speaker, coach, writer, and the director of the lifestyle
website inspiredhealth.co.nz