YOGA. LOVE. STRETCH. RUN.

Summer is here and I LOVE Summer running and training! The last few years I have raced a fall marathon so I am used to ramping up the milage this time of year. I have decided to race the Toronto Waterfront Marathon again on Oct 16. I am really looking forward to the race. It is a amazing course and very well organized. So that means I have 10 weeks till race day!

Training has been going really well. I travelled to Seattle a few weeks ago and raced the Seattle Seafair 8k. The race is Saturday night right before the parade. Thousands of people line up along the course of the 8k waiting for the parade and of course to cheer on the runners. It had been a while since I have had a PB in any distance so I was determined this night. www.Kathy-Butler.com has had me working on changing pace in a lot of my workouts and VFAC has been kicking my butt Thursday nights and Sat mornings so I knew I was ready!
The race went out really fast and it was downhill for the first few miles. I felt great and worked on staying relaxed. As I climbed over the viaduct I realized I started to slow a bit. It was a long stretch in the heat and sun that is where I lost it a bit. I managed to pull it together again towards the finish. I was very happy with my result a 20 sec PB and 3rd Female. A Big Thanks to my mental coach that day!!
Gradually my weekly milage is increasing. I have been hitting the trails a lot and the ocean to give my legs some love.
Next up is a track race Aug 27th in Victoria. I am racing the 10000m. Not sure how I got talked into this one but somehow I am on the start list. I have not raced on the track since I was 15 maybe 16 years old. This will be fun, I think. Looking forward to going away for the weekend and of course bringing home a PB.
A few days after the race I am flying to Denver and heading back to Nederland/Boulder for three weeks of marathon training. I am excited to see Kathy, Andrew and Libby. I cannot believe how fast Libby has grown in 5 months. I may race while I am away but nothing is planned as of now.

I recently did this video for Lululemon to demonstrate some amazing Yoga Poses for runners. Thank you Lululemon for this great opportunity to spread the word!
If you are training for a marathon as well this summer check out these great Yoga Poses you can practice as part of your training routine.

SUMMER YOGA STRETCHING IS HERE!

Summer is here and the nice warm weather it makes it easier to pause after a run, stretching out those tight muscles. Yoga can counterbalance the stresses that training can have on the body. Running can lead to tight hips, hamstrings, lower back and glutes. A regular yoga practice can help stretch, release and strengthen these parts of the body, while also providing a great cross-training tool for any athlete.

Strength, flexibility, endurance, mental focus and structured breathing exercises are key components to help bring balance to any athlete’s game. The breath and meditation that you practice in yoga will also help to calm the body’s nervous system and mind. Lessons learned from yoga can translate into a training session, helping to relax when you are feeling challenged.

Here are three poses that will help open your body in areas that are overworked from training. These poses will also help to improve digestion and relieve stress. It is important to bring a conscious awareness to your breath – both inhaling and exhaling – while you move into, are holding or exiting these poses.

1. Warrior Two pose: With your feet together, step your right foot to the right. Next, extend your arms parallel to the floor. Measure your feet below your wrists. Turn your right foot out 90 degrees and your left foot in slightly and align the right heel with your left arch. Exhale and bend your right knee over the right ankle, so that the shin is perpendicular to the floor. If possible, bring the right thigh parallel to the floor. Anchor this movement of the right knee by strengthening the left leg and pressing the outer left heel firmly to the floor. Keep the sides of the torso equally long and the shoulders directly over the pelvis. Lengthen the tailbone and draw the lower belly towards the spine. Turn your head to the right and relax your facial muscles.

Stay for 8-10 breaths. Inhale to come up.

2. Triangle pose: From warrior two pose, straighten your right leg and engage both thigh muscles. Exhale and extend your torso to the right directly over the right leg, bending from the hip joint, not the waist. Anchor this movement by strengthening the left leg and pressing the outer heel firmly to the floor. Keep the side body long and lengthen the tailbone toward the back heel.

Float your right hand over your shin, ankle, or the floor outside your right foot. Keep your head, shoulders and hips as if you are leaning against a wall. Follow this by stretching your left arm up and right arm down. Make sure to keep your neck in a neutral position or gaze up, keeping the sides of the throat long.

Stay in this pose for 8-10 breaths. Inhale to come up, strongly pressing the back heel into the floor. Reverse the feet and repeat both poses for the same length of time to the left.

3. Cow Face pose: Place your right knee on the floor and slide your left knee in behind the right. Slowly sit your hips down and back towards the floor. Practice getting both sitting bones evenly on the floor. If you are unable to do so, place a towel or block underneath your sit bones to level out the hips. Flex your feet. Take 8-10 breaths while stretching, then switch legs and repeat.

Namaste~