Three poses to balance the athlete in all of us

Written By: Coach Brandie

Athletes of all levels can utilize the practice of yoga to help strengthen their mind and body, prevent or recover more quickly from injury and increase their breath capacity. The following is a brief discussion of three poses (or asanas) that can help increase core strength, improve flexibility and steady the mind – a perfect balance for the strenuous work many athletes encounter in their daily training.

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Pose 1 – Anjaneyasana (low lunge)

This pose is amazing for the opening the hip flexors (front of the hip), for engaging the core to stabilize the pose and for focusing the breath and mind (drishti – your focal point is in an upward direction).

 

 

 

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Pose 2 – Ardha Chandrasana (half moon)

Another full-body pose that works on strength, balance, breath and mental focus. This pose literally has every part of your body engaged and is so powerful. One of my favorite poses, half moon makes for an amazing addition to any yoga practice.

 

 

 

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Pose 3 – Viparita Karani (legs up the wall)

This gentle inversion should definitely be a part of every athletes tool bag (heck every person – athlete or not – should practice this pose). This pose uses gravity to help reverse the stress of being on our feet all day. Legs up the wall is calming to the nervous system and helps to relax a tense body and mind.

 

 

 

No matter what sport or athletic pursuit you practice, adding yoga into the mix is beneficial on so many levels. If you want to experience the strength, balance and calmness of yoga, feel free to stop by the studio on Thursday evenings at 7:30pm for the Yoga for Athletes class taught by yours truly – I’d love to see you there.

Namaste

Meal Planning 101

Life gets busy, we totally understand. Whether you’re running your kids to and from sports or school activities or you are enjoying life between work and friends. Health can sometimes be put on the back burner.

How do you put it front and center, without feeling overwhelmed? Plain and simple, planning. You’ve heard the phrase many times before: “fail to plan and plan to fail”. So why do we constantly put our meal planning last and expect success? To make healthy living a lifestyle, you need to find a system for consistent, weekly meal planning. Laying out your meals for the week is a simple, effective way to stay on track with your health goals and it can save you a ton of money too! So where do you even start? Here are a few tips to get you started. If you need more help, connect with us this week to set up either a 1-1 nutrition coaching session or point you in the right direction!

Schedule – Look at your schedule for the week to see what you have going on. How much time do you have to cook each night (these times may vary). Maybe some nights you’ll need to stick to a quick and easy protein packed salad or go with a crockpot meal.

Recipes – Choose the recipes you love. Maybe to begin with, stick with recipes that you are familiar with and know your portions of protein, veggies, fruits, etc. are accurate. It is important throughout your day to get the right amount of foods to ensure your body receives all the nutrients it needs to run at full strength!

Plan out the week – Write out what you want to eat each day. You can simply choose your dinner, or write out breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks. You choose how much you plan.  For example, my family has a calendar in the kitchen that will list out what dinner we have scheduled for each night of the week. That way, if one of us is gone, we know what the plan of attack is for that night!

Create your grocery list – Based off the meals you’ve chosen, write out your grocery list (this is where your pocketbook may thank you). Be sure to stick to this list – no one likes seeing food go to waste.

Follow the plan – simple right? No stressing out over what’s for dinner.

Meal planning is always helpful. It is also great to plan meals ahead for the next few days – making a few overnight oatmeal bowls for breakfast, salads for lunch, etc. The options are endless.

If you or your coworkers could benefit from more information like this, tell your company about us. We offer many onsite wellness programs such as interactive Lunch & Learns. These can be an easy 30 – 45 minute class and there are over 50 different topics to choose from, including nutrition, stress-management, physical activity and more.