Monday, October 5, 2009

Yoga improves flexibility, happiness for Half Marathon runners

After a strong 11 mile run last weekend, I am beginning my taper for the Marine Corps Reserve Half Marathon in Albany, NY this Sunday. I felt extra joyful during this morning's yoga practice! Do you practice yoga as cross training in your training program?

In the article ‘Why Every Athlete Should Practice Yoga,’ RYT yoga instructor and NASM certified personal trainer Claire Petretti offers several reasons why Yoga should be added to training for the Half Marathon and other long distance running programs.

I use Yoga as crosstraining because it increases my ability to withstand fatigue from physical activity. Yoga is a series of stretches and poses that are held for a period of time. For me, breathing and concentrating on my breath helps me keep my body in the poses, which teaches me how to keep my body running through the fatigue that I feel at the end of every race.

Yoga also stretches and tones muscles I do not normally concentrate on during my running or weightlifting workouts. This gives me a more balanced, healthier body.

Yoga also helps me to see the beauty in life and appreciate every day I am alive. This improved outlook allows me to enjoy every run, and enjoyment of physical exercise will keep me running longer than weight loss or medals ever will.

I practice Yoga with Steve Ross. He teaches yoga on the Oxygen network. The program is called Inhale.

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