My lifesaver

I can confidently say that I would not be running if it weren’t for yoga.  And I wouldn’t be going to yoga if it weren’t for yoga to the people in Berkeley.  My first full marathon and the training were pretty much a disaster because I pulled my hamstring and then suffered from sciatic nerve problems for most of my training.  I literally had to lift my leg up onto curbs when I ran.  Not fun.  I took about 3 months off from running after that race to heal, so I knew something needed to change when I decided to pick up the higher mileage training again for Eugene

I made a commitment along with my Hal Higdon training plan to go to yoga at least twice a week.  It was the best decision I ever made.  I go to Yoga to the People in Berkeley, which is a Power Vinyasa Flow style class.  That means there is an emphasis on connecting the breath to each movement, we go through vigorous poses rather quickly, and I come out of class soaking in sweat.  It is awesome because the whole philosophy is based on sharing yoga with the masses and making it more accessible.  That means the teachers aren’t dressed head-to-toe in Lululemon, the music is normal everyday music, there is no required class fee, and we do crazy things like bicycle crunches and giggling in child’s pose (my favorite).  I am never bored.       

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There are YTTP studios in San Francisco, New York, Seattle and Berkeley.  I am just praying they put one in Boston before I get there!  That would be so awesome.  There are also free podcasts online.  I have done one on vacation before.  They are definitely not for the beginner since you have to know what they are talking about without any visual! 

My absolute FAVORITE thing about the studio in Berkeley is that there are NO MIRRORS.  That means that nobody is watching you, you can keep your mind on your own mat, and you are always looking great!  It really helps me relax in the class and tune into my own practice. 

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Since starting my yoga plan I have not been injured once!  I went home to Oregon for a week and didn’t do yoga and that is the first time my hamstring pain really came back.  I was super aware of the situation, though, and got right back into the yoga studio and took it easy on the running for a couple days.  Ahhh… so much better to take 2 days off instead of 3 months.  Thank you, yoga!

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