This summer we were fortunate enough to have been invited to lots of social occasions across the country. We caught up with friends and family, ceilidh’d hard and did a lot of miles by car, bike and foot. While I’m a real advocate for being busy, active and on-the-go, it can all become a bit overwhelming and dare I say… exhausting?
I’ve always dabbled in yoga. I’ve tried 2 hour long sessions in Edinburgh, Bikram (hot yoga) in Glasgow and the odd gym class here and there but never taken part regularly until this year. As a result of doing my own yoga at home at least once a week (and always after running) plus BodyBalance™ classes at my local gym (a mixture of Tai Chi, Pilates and Yoga), I have had less injuries and aches than ever before.
Not only this but I finish the session feeling taller, calmer and generally zen.
An app I’ve come to love is Yoga Studio by Gaim. It has classes you can download to your tablet or phone lasting from 10mins to a full hour. You choose your ability level (beginner, intermediate or advanced) and are guided through the whole thing with a bendy yoga girl or the famous Rodney Yee demonstrating throughout.
The classes are well paced, as challenging as you want them to be and they even have separate sections – ‘yoga for runners’ being one of my most used, focusing on those tight hips and hamstrings we know so well.
The app has recently changed from being a fixed price of £4.99 to being a subscription of £1.49 per month after a 14 day free trial (quarterly and annual subscriptions are also available). Compare this to a £9-£10 class each week and you’ve soon got your money’s worth.
Adding yoga into my week has become a calming influence to my slightly anxious brain and I cannot recommend it highly enough if you need to just focus on breathing and concentrating. Flexibility helps, of course, but if you never take part, you’re never going to get better.
It takes time and improvements are made slowly with practice – another good reason to make it a regular part of a busy lifestyle.
So this blog is slightly different from the normal ‘get outside and explore’ content. How about this week trying out a yoga class or even better, roll out a mat in a quiet room of your house, do a 30 minute class and I challenge you not to feel both refreshed and relaxed afterwards.