minutes per mile blog

yoga & running

Friday, Friday, Friday!!!!! I don’t have any running photos today since I’m taking a day off the feet. But I can share a couch update:

IMG_0594Given the rumpled cushions and crumpled Rockstar energy drink, it looks like someone had a pretty good time.

Today I got to change things up with some light weights and then YOGA at my favorite studio: The internet.P1010423Today I went with this routine from yogadownload.com. Quick, straightforward, and running-specific!

So. Yoga and running. There’s sort of a debate whether the two help or hurt each other. Here’s what I found:

The (few) argument against yoga + running. Seems like there’s some evidence that increased flexibility could result in two things: 1) looser joints that are more susceptible to injury and 2) a reduced “running economy” which can slow you down. Read more in this article by Peak Performance and this article by Triathlete magazine. (There are also arguments that say yoga in general isn’t bad for runners, but specific types of yoga — like intense power yoga or heated yoga — could put too much strain on your body.)

The (many) arguments for yoga + running. People seem to think that yoga is good for runners because it increases your range of motion and strengthens areas that are typically weak in runners’ bodies, leading to decreased risk of injury. This brief Runner’s World article recommends yoga as a way to stretch and strengthen your full body while increasing range of motion — especially in the hips, glutes, and hamstrings. The yogis at Yoga Journal say that a full-body, diverse yoga practice helps balance the muscle rigidity in runners caused by their “specific sport training.”

And then there is a bunch of stuff about how yoga helps you connect with your mind, body, and breath… which I’m sure is very interesting but I’m not zen enough to go there.

Like always, there’s no black-and-white conclusion here. But I’m going to go ahead and say that from what I can tell, the general consensus is that basic yoga is a good thing for runners. There are a plethora of articles suggesting the positive and a far few suggesting otherwise. Case closed, in my opinion. Or at least for now.

Did you think that the gumbo was a case closed, too? False. It yielded gallons upon gallons… so I froze it. Yesterday we resurrected it. Yes, I have three drinks with my gumbo in case I burst into flames while eating it.P1010421Another strategy to surviving this supremely spicy creation is to serve it atop rice with lots of cheese and a touch of sour cream. P1010420If you can name one thing that cheese doesn’t make taste better, then I will mail you a frozen tub of gumbo. Ready, set, go!

And speaking of you guys — thanks so much for the tips and conversation this week! Loved hearing about shoe-drying strategies, eyewear stories, and gym memberships. Keep the riveting discussion coming and have a great weekend :)

  • Do you do yoga? Do you think it makes you a better or worse runner?
  • If you had to drink a six-pack of any energy drink right now, what would it be?
  • What’s the #1 thing you’re looking forward to this weekend?

9 thoughts on “yoga & running

  1. Do you do yoga? Do you think it makes you a better or worse runner?
    – I don’t – and it’s bad because I am also notorious for not cooling down or stretching at all. So I am actually going to do the routine you posted today after my run this afternoon.

    If you had to drink a six-pack of any energy drink right now, what would it be?
    – I like too many of these things.. I like Javamonster – which is like a coffee energy drink (seems redundant) and can’t go wrong with sugar free redbull

    What’s the #1 thing you’re looking forward to this weekend?
    -I’ve been sick all week so I am looking forward to not being stuck on the couch underneath blankets with cold medicine.

  2. I love yoga. I used to do yoga regularly at my old neighborhood where 75-min Vinyasa class was only $5. I miss it and need to find a new studio.

    I’m looking forward to my 5K race on Saturday. I’ve been itching to see if I can run a sub-24 5K.

  3. I do yoga, and I definitely think it helps, especially my hips. They get so tight and sore if I don’t do those long hold stretches. I have never had any energy drink other than the lite Red Bull…so I don’t know…. This weekend I’m looking forward to sunshine and warm weather and reading a book in my lounger out back.

  4. I do yoga. Once every month. Haha. So bad, especially since we have a couple of yogis here at work that hold a yoga class every Friday during lunch. Just so happens that things begin to pile up on my desk at that point, too. So its just a bad time for me. I need to be better about it, especially since I’ve had this injury! I’d definitely choose Starbucks doubleshots (the little cans) as my 6-pack energy drink! Looking forward to not working (as always, on the weekends). I’ve never had much luck freezing things like that and then re-heating/eating them. I get the taste of freezer burn. Maybe its all in my head…

  5. I am also not zen enough for any sort of mind/body connection! I do yoga sometimes, and I do think it helps loosen up my hips and calves. I definitely don’t do anything more than the “basics” though.

  6. That yoga routine looks good, I’ve been neglecting stretching recently and have to get back to it – my hamstrings are feeling super-tight.

    I’m not sure if I could drink a 6 pack of any energy drink, I find them all too sickly tasting. Could I have 6 espressos instead?

  7. i started going to bikram because of an injury after a half marathon and i had another half 5 weeks later. i ended up pring by 7.5 mins on a hilly course! i think bikram hot yoga loosens me up, calms my mind and helps me breath better during my runs. i go 1-2 a week.

  8. I keep meaning to reintroduce yoga into my life. It is great for stretching and runners need to stretch. My favorite kind of yoga is hot yoga, but I can’t find room in my budget for it. :(

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