Yoga for Balance, Strength and Focus:

 

I know what you are thinking…

“Yoga is boring”

“I need to do something that makes me sweat”

“I’m not into all that Zen stuff”

I had the same thoughts too until I tried it. Yoga is not boring so much as it is relaxing. It teaches you to focus and breathe. It may not be a cardio workout but you do sweat. And a little “zen” has never hurt anyone.

Most runners have tight hip flexors and hamstrings –unless you’re one of the few that actually stretch after every run–(who has time for that 😉 ) so we need to do yoga. Yoga forces you to stretch and stretching becomes more important as we get older. Flexible joints are healthy joints.

I feel like yoga was developed specifically for runners. Almost all the poses benefit running form (even the last pose, when you lie on the floor and nap–shavasana–my favorite, allows your muscle to recover).

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I found a great article in Runners World (RW) about a male runner who discovered the benefits of yoga.

…on a side note… have I told you how much I love that magazine? I totally recommend a subscription to RW. It keeps you motivated with great information and inspirational articles…click here to subscribe.

I said “male runner” because most men think yoga is for women and are embarrassed to go to a class. I tried to find the article on the RW website to share with you but I was unsuccessful. The article reinforces the fact that yoga works. Poses may seem impossible or even silly, but they help with balance, strength and flexibility. I don’t know about you but I can benefit from all of those things.

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I go to a great studio in Huntington Beach. It is clean, roomy, the staff’s friendly and they offer a variety of classes for a reasonable price. It is Harmony HB Arts & Wellness Center.

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I found them through Groupon and bought more classes when my Groupon ran out. Using Groupon is a great way to try something new. Before I decide on which Groupon to purchase I generally check the regular (non-Groupon) prices. So that way if I like the service I know a head of time if I can afford it later without the Groupon. Remember to check expiration dates too. If you can’t find a particular yoga studio you want to go to on Groupon check with the studio because sometimes they offer special introductory prices for new clients.

I have added a yoga video that goes through some basic poses designed with the runner in mind. The video helps you stretch your hip flexors, hamstrings, calves and lower back. Try it the day after a long run to help loosen up tired tight muscles.

Click here  for the YouTube video.

I hope this has inspired you to try yoga. It really does improve strength and flexibility. If you need a yoga mat click the affiliate link below. This is the mat I use. It’s thick and cushy. 🙂

 

 

 

Thanks for reading.

Keep running my friends!

 

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