Yoga and Working Out

core-strength-exercies-one-leg-plankWow! It’s amazing how much better I feel when I’m consistently working out and spicing up my yoga practice with challenging asana. How is it that I’ve let myself fall out of routine so many times through my life, I wonder?

Do you find this same thing true for you? Our bodies crave activity, and reward us by looking and feeling better when we take care of ourselves. Yet often the whole working out thing seems to go in spurts of dedication and neglect…

But it’s a New Year now, which is good for working out in a lot of ways. We not only have the motivation of all the delicious, extravagant meals and other treats over the holidays, we also have the tantalizing promise of a ‘New You’.

That idea of re-creating yourself is very important and totally real. Every year, every day, and every moment you get to choose who you want to be. Which means no matter how many times you’ve fallen off track, you have another chance to step up to where you want to be.

Another great thing about this time of year is that there are SO many people getting going with exercise and recommitting themselves to keeping it up, that there’s an energetic momentum that makes it easier to actualize.

Some Yoga Tips for Working Out

core-strength-exercies-warrior2Is there a way to bring yoga into the broader exercise picture, other than the asana practice itself? Yes.

First off, remember that life is yoga, so you don’t stop connecting to your highest self when you step on the treadmill. You don’t forget about alignment when you’re lifting weights. It’s all a part of it.

When you workout as mindfully as you’d practice on your mat, it not only increases the effectiveness of the benefits, but you enjoy it more. It helps you want to keep up with a workout routine.

Also, applying the same kind of dedication to exercise that you do for your asana practice can go a long way. If you can create a habit of working out, like sticking with a schedule for a month straight, chances are you’re going to actually keep it up long term.

A few tips:

  • Rotate your cardio activities: bike, hike, run, walk, dance, swim, etc.
  • Use yoga alignment to get the most out of everything you do
  • Add more core and strengthening exercises to your yoga practice
  • Most importantly, make it fun!

Remember to stretch after you work out.

Here’s a video series with a great post workout stretch sequence:

  • How often do you workout? What are some of your favorite activities? Please comment below and let me know.

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