And stretch

After today’s exciting but taxing running training session things are starting to seize up.

I have just been upstairs to run through my cat and dog yoga stretches.

These stretches are great for sore core and limbs. Bodywindow.com’s demonstration below is great, though looking out the window here at the rain reminds me why we don’t do this outdoors in Manchester.

And Stretch…

We all know how our muscles tighten up after runs. And we all know we should stretch properly after our runs. How long do you give stretching, maybe five minutes?

As well as those post-run stretches, have you considered yoga as a real asset to your running schedule?  As a rest-day alternative, if you really can’t sit still, it has so much to recommend it.

I mentioned yoga to Harry the personal trainer and he nodded enthusiastically and mentioned ‘downward dog’. Downward facing dog has the calf stretch to beat all calf stretches – and it’s stretching hamstrings, arches, shoulders, hands and your back, to boot!

But there are a myriad of yoga positions you’ll move through during a class so all of you gets a treat.

Runners World featured yoga in their magazine’s August issue, showing a variety of stretches you can achieve with the aid of a pillow (no, not putting it under your head and falling asleep).

But there are also styles of yoga that are pretty testing on the muscles, increasing strength as well as . I’m a big fan of ashtanga yoga and there are classes all over South Manchester where you can drop in at classes. It’s an hour and a half work out but my goodness, you’re floating by the end. Metaphorically speaking.

There are many different types and yoga fusions out there today, you are bound to find something that suits your temperament, whether you like fluid movement, from one yoga position to another, or whether stillness suits you well.

But one thing’s for sure. A relaxed, stretched out body can only help in the quest: to run a bit faster.

Namaste, runners everywhere.