December Yoga

This year started with a daily yoga practice in January, vowing to reconnect mind and body. Although at times a thought to get on the mat, I never regretted the time I spent there, always feeling good for the practice I engaged in whether it be Ali’s taught class at Run 4 It, or a home practice with Adriene. (https://yogawithadriene.com/calendar/)

Somehow life once again changed the course of time and I lapsed in my daily practice as February turned into March. Before long the racing season was upon us and alongside work and marathon training I did less and less, finally stopping my practice altogether.

I intended to restart last month (November) but that never did quite happen, despite downloading the calendar from Find What Feels Good Yoga (https://www.fwfgkula.com)

So, today my practice begins again. The journey has started and I have newly spent 37 minutes on my mat (time flew!), surprised by the tightness I felt in my muscles and the renewed feeling of sitting more upright and feeling a little straighter by the end.

I can’t promise to commit daily, and ultimately it makes no odds to you if I do or don’t, but I’m going to try. Find that headspace and look after my body.

What (if any) is your practice? Do you have a go-to app or channel?

Listen to your body!

They say the body is very intuitive; I’ve been told by the physiotherapist in the past that I have good body awareness. Thus, if it’s talking to me by expressing soreness or a niggle, I have no qualms about taking an extra rest day.

I frequently find myself reminding others that rest is your friend. In order to perform well and avoid breaking down you do need to allow your muscles to recover, especially after a hard workout or run.

Touch wood, this self-care surely must be part of the reason why I’m rarely injured (possibly alongside the monthly massage I’ve enjoyed since 2008)! I may at times be too in touch with my body. It often suggests taking a break to enjoy a glass of wine on the sofa, or stopping off for coffee and cake on the way home rather than enduring a soaking on a miserable winter’s night.

And so, through listening intuitively the yoga ‘streak’ ended on Thursday. I have managed 31 consecutive days of yoga (in addition to weekly Pilates and some running), but found myself increasingly tired this week, probably due to the germs that are being readily shared at work, and by the time I reached home last night my body was ready to rest.

A poor excuse for a Friday night, I slobbed on the sofa watching catch up TV before getting an early night. No parkrun today as I’m feeling a little under the weather still. Instead, I have spent some time on the yoga mat – the practice will continue – and I am going to nourish both body and mind by lunching out with friends.

Hopefully a day of rest will see me fit for the trails tomorrow but time will tell.

Has your body spoken to you recently? What did it say?

Volunteering (and a lack of motivation!)

Happiest outdoors or not, having volunteered at Stonehaven parkrun this morning I was somewhat frozen and lacking any motivation to go running outdoors this afternoon so headed inside for the ‘dreadmill’ instead.

I’ve been struggling to find the motivation to run of late. Darkness and cold are not great motivators and today’s session has been hanging over me like a dark cloud of dread, knowing my fitness is not where it once was, and having a lactate threshold session to address. In the end I was pleasantly surprised to find that although the session was hard it was doable having re-evaluated my training paces. There may be hope for me yet!

Yoga has been going well and I’ve succeeded in keeping my daily practice going for 13 days so far. Give me daily yoga over a run streak any day!

Back to the volunteering …

Having enjoyed my run at Stonehaven last week I had offered my services to volunteer this week and was given the role of Timekeeper. In my experience timekeeping is one of the more challenging roles to fill at parkrun. People are scared they may mess it up and this is why most parkruns have two timekeepers. Ultimately it’s a free run and there are far worse things that can happen in life – there’s always next week! Oh, and the timers are very visual and remarkably easy to operate.

CD11E185-7DCB-4504-881E-07EE64A4A3D0
An impressive amount of first timers showed up for the Briefing 👍 Stonehaven are keen to encourage both walkers and runners to join them on Saturday mornings.

All went smoothly today and I was fortunate in having the joy of chatting to fellow volunteers, Alison and Alex, throughout. It’s amazing how time passes when you’re having a good blether. Alison was the smiley marshal from the top of the hill last week and is frustratingly injured at present, so I wish her a speedy recovery back to full strength.

99FE4EB1-155E-4DA9-8212-303E7A2B1FB9
One of the lovely thing about a multi-lap course is the opportunity to cheer the runners as they pass 👏

Onwards, Terryanne’s Cafe at the Bowling Club saw us warmed up with coffee and chat, always a great finish to parkrun.

028FBD97-8647-4C51-A8ED-2B9BE43CFD26
The finish line gathering

If you’ve ever fancied trying parkrun please give it a go! The sense of community and friendliness has been evident at each of the runs I’ve done and it’s something special to be part of this truly amazing community.

 

Yoga: Nourishing the body and mind

I have a love / hate relationship with yoga. It’s something I’d like to do more of – to become more flexible, to stretch my weary muscles, to take time out of life just to breathe and be in the moment.

When I’m on the mat (even if it’s just when I’m in Savasana) I do love my practice. However, I find it difficult fitting it into an already busy schedule and this is the part that I hate – what gives in order to fit yet another thing in! Hence the reason why I’ve decided to commit this January to True Yoga, a free 30 day online programme (Yoga with Adriene), the intention being that at some point each evening, even if it’s just before bed, I will find time for me and time for my practice.

Today was Day 3: Stretch, and it felt amazing, exactly what my body needed and definitely a practice I’ll return to again (regardless of whether or not I make it through the 30 day journey).

Yoga supports my goal of developing strength in both body and mind. With the help of online sessions such as Yoga with Adriene, and ‘real’ classes (Ali Mathers has great runners specific classes in Run 4 It and Warehouse Gym), I truly do hope that this year I will be able to find and value the space to commit to my practice regularly.

Namaste