Do Yoga Outside (Yes, Even In Winter)
You don’t let weather derail your run, so don’t let it derail your Reset—your ability to find more balance anytime, anywhere. The best way to use yoga to optimize your running is to do relevant things daily—a little bit goes a super long way when you practice in a way that directly address the demands of your mileage. But how to fit it in to your cray day? Do it first thing, outside, when your run is done. As soon as you head back inside, insta/shower/snack/work/life are way more likely to make it fall by the wayside, so press pause on all those things and get it done with this quick post-run Reset—the key being that it only takes a couple minutes. You’ll ease stiffness and tension in all your key running muscles, and more fully absorb the benefits of the work you’ve just done. In other words, you’ll get more out of your run by doing this after. Plus, you’ve got all day to be inside, and you’ll feel better for each breath of fresh air you get.
Hold each stretch for 5–10 deep breaths.
Breathing Space: Stretches chest, neutralizes posture, re-establishes breathing space.
- Bring your hands to your low back and interlace your fingers—if that’s not possible, rest your hands on your low back with your fingers pointing toward the ground.
- Squeeze your shoulder blades toward each other and move your elbows closer together so you feel your chest broaden.
- “Puff up” your chest with your breath—deepening your breathing and the stretch.
Crossed Leg Side Bend: Restores balance by moving outside your running range of motion, stretches sides and low back, increases IT band and hip fluidity.
- Stand with your feet hips width apart and parallel.
- Turn your palms forward and reach your arms overhead.
- Grab your left wrist with your right hand and bend your torso to the right.
- Cross your left leg over your right, keeping your feet flexed and knees slightly bent.
- Switch sides.
Straddle Forward Fold: Restores balance by moving outside your running range of motion, eases hamstring stiffness, increases fluidity through your legs.
- Step your feet wide apart with your feet parallel.
- Walk your hands down your legs, bending your knees as much as needed to rest your hands on the ground.
- Try to keep your torso close to your thighs—bend your knees more if needed to make that happen.
- Bend and stretch your legs a few times and then be still.
- Press down evenly through your feet to gently deepen the stretch rather than trying to force your knees back more.
Squat: Eases stiffness and increases fluidity to hips, hamstrings, and lower legs.
- From your Straddle Forward Fold, heel/toe your feet closer together, turning your heels in and your toes out.
- Bend your knees deeply to come down into a squat, keeping your weight back toward your heels—stay as high as needed to keep your heels down, and take your feet wider apart if needed.
- Rest your forearms on your thighs, or your hands on the ground in front of you.