I just got back from an awesome yoga class at The Green Yogi with Mkunde, our new sixth grade math teacher who just moved to Los Angeles from New York City. We have challenged ourselves to visit a new yoga studio every week until we find a few favorite studios to make our more permanent yoga homes. We have already taken Rudy’s infamous yoga class at Santa Monica Power Yoga and next week I’m thinking about suggesting the Yoga Collective in Venice. I love yoga. I love its ability to help me find a sense of peace, calm and relaxation in moments of challenge. Over the years I have gone through yoga phases where I have practiced three-four times a week, but it typically meant less running time, less husband time after work and less cash. Running is cheap and less of a time commitment. Although I will always be more of a runner than a yogi, I think it is manageable to commit to a studio class once a week. Especially because I think it makes me a stronger runner.
Much like running, yoga gives me a reflective space. Yoga poses can be incredibly difficult, but the practice has taught me to remain calm especially when it gets tough. I have learned to embrace the feeling of so desperately wanting to move out of a challenging pose, but instead forcing a smile and moving into the pose more deeply. It is a skill I can translate to my work with students and families. I’m encountered with experiences were I need take a deep breathe and demonstrate self-control and calm on a daily basis.
I also find that a regular practice helps keep my hips healthy so that I can keep running injury free. Yoga strengthens the muscles that prevent me from acquiring ITBS, what killed me at my first marathon back in 2008.
Runner’s World also has an awesome collection of short online yoga classes. They are tailored for us mileage junkies, designed to strengthen our weak muscles that often result in injury. I’ve found them really helpful when I’m traveling. Sitting on plane, trains and automobiles tightens hips.A few questions I have for other runners out there. Comment below. 1. How do you balance running and yoga? 2. Do you think a regular yoga practices makes you a better runner? 3. SoCal residents, where do you practice?
Oh also, TOTALLY unrelated to yoga, last night I was complaining about my need for a desk and proper work space at school. Amazon reads minds. I woke up this email this morning. Very tempting!