My Training Ground Rules

As mentioned in my last post, I’m taking my running regime to a new level. I’ve taken my usual yoga, running and spinning routine and have spiced it up with strength and interval training, race pace workouts and sprints. I am LOVING it! It feels so good to put some structure around my workouts to make sure I’m getting those hard workouts in and also most importantly, resting!

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Naturally, we’re conditioned that if we want to perform to the level we want to, then we need to ALWAYS be pushing ourselves 110%+. And without the structure of a training plan, I was doing just that. Pushing myself in my practice, in my running and even during the spin classes I taught. I didn’t realize it, but weeks would go by where I didn’t even have 1 day off from working out. Not very smart. Our bodies need rest! And I would feel it.

I had a difficult time feeling strong in my runs. I also was slowly beginning to loose motivation in my yoga practice and I just felt so damn tired! However, now that I have a goal and some structure around it, I have a clearer picture of how to preserve and expend my energy. Here are some ground rules I have established for myself.

1. Take at LEAST 1 day of off. This day of rest can include yoga but it HAS to be restorative. It can include a long walk or being out and about the city but sweating cannot be involved.

2. 1 or 2 “active” yoga classes, all other classes have to be”slow flow” or restorative classes or a modified practice. This has changed my yoga practice in the best possible way. More than ever, I’m not focused on the physical aspects of what the practice can do but the focus, relaxation and the rest it brings to my body and mind. 

3. Short Yin Practice after Running. I have not only found this to be amazing for stretching out my tight muscles after my runs but it has also been incredible for grounding. As someone with high energy, after a hard work-out or run it can be like caffeine; amping me up and then letting me crash later.  This 10 to 15 minutes of staying low to the ground and holding poses for at least 10 rounds of breath has been essential for balancing my energy, especially when I have a big day of teaching. Here’s my “I’m Too Tired To Stretch” sequence I do and here’s another yoga flow I do post run as well. 

4. Schedule EVERYTHING ahead of time. Every Sunday, I look at my calendar and the weather for the week and I plan my runs, my yoga classes and my rest day(s). Having this clear picture of what’s ahead gets me pumped up and ensures that I’m expending my energy appropriately and resting. I’ve also found that this has helped a lot with diet and has motivated me to plan when and what I’m going to eat. 

What are your “ground rules” that allow you to perform and feel your best?