"Best thing I've done for myself in years."
How I did it: I started out following beginners' walk-run programs from various websites and magazines. I ended up putting my own program together based on what I found from these sources. I started out warming up with 5 minutes of walking, followed by 10 sets of walking 1 minute/running 1 minute, stretching, and a 5 minute cool down. After three weeks of running/walking 5 to 6 days a week, I'm now running 2.5 minutes and walking 1 minute 6 times with the same warm up and cool down. Every few days - as I'm comfortable - I add another thirty seconds of running to each set. I'm gradually building up to twenty solid minutes of running. I will then build to thirty.
Lessons & tips: Well, I'm no personal trainer or fitness instructor. I only know my own experience. For me, it was incredibly important not to push too hard too fast. Trying to run for three minutes on the second or third day - or even the second week - only discouraged me. Then I wouldn't want to run the next day. At this point, running has become a habit and a part of my everyday routine. I look forward to it and am building it up in a way that is comfortable for me.
I have a much easier time running at 5 AM (or at least before 7 AM) so that heat doesn't compound the difficulty of the run. Hydration has also been key. I'm drinking a lot more water, otherwise I feel it when I run.
Resources: Runnersworld.com has tons of free articles and resources available. I also went to a running specialty store to buy new running shoes. The shoes themselves (Asics) are great, but the key was having a professional who also runs watch me run and help me find the right type of running shoe for my stride/feet.
I've also been trying to make it to one Bikram yoga class a week. I've found the heat and stretching helps to keep my muscles loose. I think it's also strengthening core muscles that might not get the greatest workout from running alone.