I’ve been lifting consistently for 12 years. I started probably a little younger than I should have, but that’s neither here nor there at this point. I fell in love with it immediately. I could put my headphones in, play my music, and get after it.
I continued playing football in highschool, after playing in grade school, and that exposed me to more ways to lift and exercise in general (through off season workouts). I integrated plyometrics, cardio, circuit training, and crossfit like movements. I had enough to continue making creative, nonrepetitive workout plans for myself for years.
Well during these 12 years of weight lifting I would get hurt here and there. Nothing too serious but enough to notice. Most notable would be my hamstrings and lower back. This started to cause real problems in my day-to-day life.
I loved being active and knew I had to address this for the long-term.
TL; DR #1: I found my body in knots and developed back pain at the ripe old age of 22.
In the past I did regular “flow” yoga with a friend on maybe half a dozen occasions (by her request). Mostly as a way for us to hang out, after graduating from our university, when we lived far from each other.
I always remembered leaving feeling fresh and stretched out. It was by no means what I consider a workout, but it had obvious benefits.
Well, fast forward to about a month ago and I told a few friends I was interested in doing yoga. Then, out of the blue, my roommate came through with a one month pass to CorePower Yoga! (no sponsorship)
I started right after the new year and have gone 5-6x a week since. This was an incredible game changer.
TL; DR #2: Doing yoga 5-6x a week, for the last 4 weeks, has been one of the best decisions of my life so far.
So if you’re not familiar with how yoga works, here’s the run down:
Each yoga studio does things a little different. At my CorePower (again, no sponsorship here) they have a few more basic classes “CR- Core Restore,” “HPF- Hot Power Fusion,” and “C1- Core 1”) that are more or less stretching and poses, most of which are in heated class rooms (80-100 degrees farenheit) and some with added humidity.
Then there is “C2- Core 2” which is where I’ve found the experts go. They’re doing the splits in the air and all these things I’d like to do at some point.
I enjoy this class because I have the strength (from lifting) to do all the inverted poses but not the best balance, so it’s a good challenge. Plus you’re sweating profusely from the heat and humidity, so you’re leaving feeling accomplished and cleansed.
Then there is my favorite: “Yoga Sculpt.” If I were explaining the vibe of this class it would be classical music meets EDC Vegas.
Classical music because its many of the typical yoga poses found in nearly any yoga class. EDC Vegas because the instructor seems to hyped up on redbull, exclaiming the next exercise/pose over the electronic/top 40 music that keeps your heart rate up. Oh yeah and its about 100 degrees farenheit and 60% humidity.
Also, you have two sets of weights. 3lbs and 5lbs, now I’ve graduated to 5lbs and 8lbs. Not sure when I’ll get to the 10’s and 12’s. This is nice because you don’t want to lose what you’ve worked hard for in the weight room.
I’ve never come so close to passing out from exercise as I did last Wednesday. Its especially important to control your breathing, even more so for myself being asthmatic. Well I lost control of the in through your nose out through your mouth routine and pushed myself anyways. Things got dizzy, light, and dark pretty quick. Had to take a knee for 2-3 mins to beat it.
I should have taken a moment, regained control of my breath and resumed before almost passing out; easier said than done when your conditioned mentality is to make your crazy mind drive your lazy body….
Yoga Sculp: stretching, plyometrics, lifting, cardio, and sweating.
For me, it addresses my injuries by strengthening my hamstrings, lengthening my spine for posture (back pain) and increasing each body part’s range of motion. Not to mention the mindfulness, but that will be saved for another post….
If the opportunity presents itself, check it out.
TL; DR #3: try yoga.
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