I saw this on Twitter the other day, and thought I would share it with everyone.
So what will you do today to lift someone up?
Now I have always been an advocate of using split routines for strength training so that I could keep my workouts short and focus on limited muscle groups. I also kind of dreaded trying to work my whole body in a single workout, so maybe there was a bit of laziness on my part. A couple months ago I began to study yoga and started practicing 6 days a week in the evenings when I would normally do my weight training. Now I wasn’t about to give up weight (strength) training so I consolidated my routines into a single day that would accommodate my yoga practice on the other 6 days a week. I thought that I was going to lose strength and conditioning as I did need to trim some exercises and sets out of my strength training program to fit everything in to one session and not kill myself. In reality the loss of strength or conditioning has not occurred, so I am going to hypothesize that there are several reasons including:
I’m not advocating that you drop you split routine, and for myself I would have stayed the course if it were not for the demands of my yoga practice, but to my surprise the full body routine has its advantages. Maybe another epiphany here is that you don’t have to give up weight training because you love yoga or Pilates or running or some other form of training. You can find a way to adjust your schedule and still get the benefits that these multiple disciplines provide.
As I may have mentioned in a previous post I have hopped, jumped, thrown myself on the yoga bandwagon, and thought I would give you a few reasons why. I started reading “The Power of Ashtanga Yoga: Developing a Practice That Will Bring You Strength, Flexibility, and Inner Peace” by Kino MacGregor someone who studied under Jois the person who devoted his life to teaching Ashtanga yoga. One thing Kino talks about in the book is the importance of regular practice, meaning 6 days a week. The reason being is that if you attend a yoga class, and maybe practice yourself another day in the week you will not progress. I’m not saying you will not benefit from practicing two days a week, but you probably will not increase your flexibility or really gain the peace of mind that comes with daily practice.
Last week I performed my yoga practice of about 30 asana’s six days in a row, and it was amazing how my hamstrings and back are beginning to show signs of increased flexibility. This is actually becoming very addictive as I am practicing at night after work, and look forward to it all day. Now I’m not saying you shouldn’t practice yoga one, two, or three days a week; if nothing else it is a wonderful form of exercise. I think the reason Kino advocates 6 days a week is that the body needs more frequent exposure to the poses before it begins to transform the muscles and tendons to allow you a greater range of motion. As for myself I am still working on some pretty basic poses in preparation for embarking on the Ashtanga primary series expounded upon in the “The Power of Ashtanga Yoga: Developing a Practice That Will Bring You Strength, Flexibility, and Inner Peace”, but we all have to start somewhere.
Well my journey continues, and in a couple of weeks I will embark on the Ashtanga primary series, and give you and update. I would recommend if you want to learn more about Ashtanga yoga that you read Kino MacGregor’s book, it is extremely well written and easy to understand. The book is only $14.95 at Amazon and is 240 pages with great photography of Kino performing the poses.
Some other good sources for learning more about yoga include:
Yoga Basics – lots of great information, how to, meditation, etc.
Yoga.com – very cool stories and videos
Yoga Journal – probably the most popular yoga magazine
Definition of Namaste: In Sanskrit the word is namah + te = namaste which means “I bow to you” – my greetings, salutations or prostration to you. The word ‘namaha’ can also be literally interpreted as “na ma” (not mine). It has a spiritual significance of negating or reducing one’s ego in the presence of another.