Ahhhh it has been an interesting few days to say the least... Back in March, some of my fellow yoga teachers 'suggested' I join them for a half marathon in Birmingham! Birmingham? A marathon?! Running?! Nahhhh, I am alright thanks.
In truth, every year for the past... 3 or 4 years, I have made the resolution to run a half marathon. And failed each time. I hate running. With a burning passion. I get so bored, my hip flexors hurt, so beyond a 20 minute run once every six weeks to give myself good conscience, I think it is fair to say, I am not a runner. After years of failed resolutions, I concluded that I was not succeeding, simply because I did not really want to. So this year, 2016, no resolutions. Move on to March and this half marathon proposition... no thanks.
Fast forward to last week end, and suddenly I am saying yes. That same night, I go home, I book my spot, and the hotel, before I have the chance to change my mind. Day 2, I invest in running shoes, I get a training programme, and find out that half marathon prep should take 8 to 10 weeks. I have got 6.
Since then, I have been running three times a week. We are on the first run of week 2, and I have run an amazing (for me it truly is) 12km. I can't quite believe it. I still hate every second of the run itself, but I am thriving on the challenge. I am so stubborn that I just won't give up! I would secretly love to run. The simplicity of putting on some shoes and hitting the road seems so freeing, so I am hoping that this is a turning point.
Somehow, I put the success of these runs down to yoga. Yes, because my body is strong enough to sustain the effort, but mainly for the focus, the attention to the breath, the ability to regulate that breath. It has also become a key part of recovery. I have been sneaking in to some hot classes at yogahaven just after my run and the warmth helps my muscles stretch out, whilst the class itself helps to ease out the twinges and aches.
I have also been extra diligent with my myofascial release sessions. My trusty tennis balls come with me every where! Those of you who have come to the workshops, you will know it is bitter sweet... but so good! And I have been spending a lot of time in some stretchy poses for the lower limbs. Here are some of my favs for running recovery! Happy stretching, and wish me luck! Five weeks to go!