I am your typical runner. I love to lace up my shoes and head out the door and rack up those miles and ever since Nike Running introduced the new app feature of being able to see your leader board I am even more obsessed with racking up the miles.
However, when I started training for my first marathon the wonderful Marie Purvis added yoga to my run schedule and I thought to myself “how is yoga going to help me run 26.2 miles?” yoga help more than you think and I am just realizing this now.
On my first a marathon training I did Bikram yoga; I stretched out but I didn’t really put my heart into it I did it because it was on my schedule and that was what my training was telling me to do that day. Now I have a different mentality towards yoga.
I have had two minor injuries this last year and both have scared me into stretching out more and giving my muscles the love it deserves. I thought yoga was just that stretching out but yoga so much more!!
I don’t always have the time or money to go to a yoga studio but the amazing ladies at Nike Women have yoga on their Nike Training Club app and the beautiful and talented Leah Kim walks you through the workouts. I love doing this at the end of my day because she has a very soothing voice that calms me down and also the yoga helps me sleep better and gets my body ready to relax and start repairing itself.
Leah has two yoga workouts on the NTC app a 45 minute one for those days you a have a little bit more time and a 15 minute one for the days you feel a
bit rushed. Some of the poses can be very difficult at first but what I have learned is not to give up but to keep trying them because each time you will see your body go into the pose more and more and even though you might not be 100% into the pose you are still gaining benefits from it.
This isn’t a plug for Leah or anything! Even though I do respect and adore her.
I found a HUGE benefit in yoga with my running. It has allowed me to open up my hips and stretch out my body, it has allowed me to stretch those joints and smaller muscles that you forget about and that can cause great injury but one thing that it has really helped me do is perfect my running form.
Yoga has perfected my posture and in perfecting my posture it has also perfected my running form and when you have a better form your body can perform at its peak and this has greatly helped me increase my speed. As a marathon runner trying to qualify for Boston speed is important but also preventing injury is just as important. Everyone knows when you increase speed your risk for injury goes up and yoga has helped me stay injury free, have better form that in turn has increased my overall training.
I am finding a new love for yoga and I am realizing that yoga and running go hand in hand like a good Almond butter and banana sandwich.
I challenge you to try yoga out maybe 3 times this week, if you don't have the Nike Training Club app maybe find a youtube video but I promise you that you will see the benefits of yoga in your running.