A simple yoga routine loosens tight spots, strengthens weak spots, and makes you a better, less injury-prone runner.
Recognizing the benefits this ancient practice can have on both the runner’s body (improved flexibility, range of motion, muscular strength) and mind (more focus, less stress), helps runners improve performance and prevent injury.
It relieves soreness and tension in your hardworking muscles and restores range of motion so you can run better the next time you hit the road.
This routine can be done after running…or on non running days so don;t be afraid to try it on days other than Wednesday. The moves might feel a little uncomfortable at first, especially if you are brand-new to yoga and have been running with tight muscles for a long time. Ease into each position, and never push to the point of pain. As you continue to do this routine, you’ll notice improvement…on and off the mat.
While yoga will be a great addition to our weekly schedule, it is not a good substitute for our more intense aerobic exercise…running. A review of 17 studies of yoga practices published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise says that, “while some forms of yoga can provide moderate cardiovascular benefits, runners should best view yoga as a strength and flexibility complement to rather than a substitute for their primary sport.”
This doesn’t mean there aren’t more strenuous yoga sessions out there…in fact, the sun salutation, a series of standing, lunging and other poses, done relatively quickly and usually repeated two to six times, can be the equivalent of a walk-run combination averaging between 12:00 and 15:00 per mile. But our yoga routine is going to focus on stretching and flexibility…not aerobic exercise. So if you want to run on Wednesday…by all means…go run first! 🙂
After your run…find a quiet place and go through each of these stretches slowly. Once you’ve taken your time and done all the moves…knock out a 1 minute plank and call it a day. These moves are all that you “have” to do today so if it’s all you have time for…make it count.
Day 4 exercises:
- Yoga for Runners – 8 Stretches
- Plank – 1 minute (1X)
It would be a great idea to print out the Yoga for Runners so you can see the photos and follow the steps easily. Here’s the link to our Yoga page. You can also find a PDF in the “files” in our Strong to the Core Facebook group.
If you are running today, don’t forget your running drill…this week we are doing butt kicks. Work them in after you warm up. And don’t forget to make time for speed work! Remember you want to leave time in between speed work and your long run so make sure to plan it out and get it done. Here is a link to our running drills and speed work listed on Monday’s post.
Stretch those hips, legs, hamstrings, calves, back…and whatever else needs some love…have fun with it and make it a great day Core Crew! 🙂