Running: To be a good athlete you must have good training practices.
Training practices are more than just what you do on the track; they involve how you live your day to day life.
Coaching - Seeking out someone with more experience then you is always a good idea.
There is no sense re-inventing the wheel when someone has already tested several methods and can save you a lot of time leading to greater efficiency in your training.
Be Open - A huge part to becoming an experienced athlete is to keep your mind open, both to new ideas and to feedback.
Recognize that you don’t know everything and that you can learn a lot from those who are more experienced.
Take it slow - Set reasonable goals. If you’re a twice a week runner, don’t expect to make the upcoming Olympics.
Reasonable goals will keep you mentally fit and motivated to keep training.
If you try to take things too quickly chances are you will get burnt out both mentally and physically.
Injury Prevention - I don’t know of any great athlete that hasn’t suffered an injury at one point in their career, and knows how devastating it can be.
An injury can put an end to a season or an entire career.
Be smart in your running training to best avoid injuries.
This can be accomplished by using the right equipment.
Why take the risk of training in year old running shoes when it’s recommended to buy new ones every 6 months?
Proper warm up and cool downs, can greatly decrease your risk of injury.
Not warming up is like driving a car really hard without giving it a tune up.
You are playing with fireworks.
This can involve jogging to warming your muscles up, stretching and other mobility drills to make sure you are ready to begin your training session.
If you take these things into consideration I have no doubt that you will have success in what ever it is you are training for.