Looking to mix up your strength training routine? Try this fusion of isometric yoga asanas, dynamic yoga asanas and resistance training. This is actually one of two workouts I’m doing right now and it’s super fun 🙂
WARM UP with 5 sun salutations
3 x barbell squat/deadlift/row – Grab a barbell and load it with a weight you can manage to row in a bent-over position for 6 reps. Hold the bar in front of you and squat down, push back up and lower bar into a deadlift position, making sure to push your butt back behind you. Once in the lowest position, row the bar to your chest then slowly lower. Push your hips forward up and extend back up into standing position. Rest between sets for this one.
3 x down dog kickbacks – Get into high plank position and press back into down dog. From here, lift one leg back behind you, keeping your hips parallel to the floor. Bring that same leg in and your knee into your chest. Repeat.
3 x push-up side planks – Get into a push-up position and lower down until your chest is close to the floor. Push up and roll onto the side of your foot, stack your legs and lift one arm straight up overhead into side plank position. Return to push-up position and alternate sides.
3 x crow/jump back into cobra – Get into crow position and try to hold the pose for 5-10 seconds. Contract your core and shoot your legs back out behind you, while lowering your body to the floor. Curl your toes over, extend your back and press up through your palms into cobra.
3 x lateral raise – Grab a set of dumbbells and stand shoulder-width apart, weights slightly out in front of you. Raise them out to the sides until your arms are parallel with the floor; slowly lower.
3 x glute bridge – Lie on your back with your knees bent, heels of your feet on the floor. Squeeze your butt and rise up into bridge, hold for 5 seconds, then slowly lower before your repeat.
Have you tried mixing yoga into your strength training workouts? What are your favourite yoga poses?
I was first introduced to Tonic apparel while attending the Every Woman Moves conference weekend in Whistler almost five years ago. This local Vancouver-based yoga and lifestyle apparel company uses environmentally friendly manufacturing processes when creating their clothing, which is awesome. Their stuff is high quality and made right in Vancouver, which is also awesome. Tonic is available in select specialty stores throughout the world, including Breathe Athletic here in Victoria on Fort Street.
If you happen to live in Victoria and are free today between 10 a.m and 4 p.m., stop by Breathe Athletic for Tonic’s Promo Day event! Ania from Tonic Lifestyle Apparel will be there to chat about their Canadian-made brand of athletic clothing and to give away complimentary headbands. There will be a draw for a fabulous Tonic outfit and a 10% discount on all purchases and light refreshments. Can’t make it in store? The discount applies to purchases made online as well.
Below are a few of my favourite pieces on their website right now. I especially like the sweat shirt/infinity scarf/fuchsia capri pant combo. If I didn’t have an office job where I had to dress business causal sometimes, I would live in that outfit 24/7.
I’ve been a runner for over seven years and have completed many marathons, half marathons, 10Ks, trail races, triathlons and even an ultra. I’ve been a gym junkie since I was about 22 years old, and finally decided to take my love of resistance training to the next level last year by becoming a certified strength and conditioning coach.
The first time I tried yoga was at a community centre when I was in high school. I went with a bunch of my girlfriends, and almost got booted out of the class for snickering during cat-cow pose. (It was Kundalini yoga, so there was a lot of heavy, guttural breathing, which was making us giggle like a bunch of, well… immature high school girls.) We decided if wasn’t for us, especially after the instructor made us sing a song at the end about a long-time sun. (I still remember that song, and we’d jokingly sing it on occasion in class at school, operatic style.)
I didn’t try a yoga class again until I was about 21 years old. I got a pass for Christmas and went a few times. I really enjoyed it, but couldn’t afford to go regularly. I did my own thing at home based on what I learned in the studio for several years, practicing less and less until the only yoga I did was a few stretches at the end of my runs. (more…)
Me and my bestie Janine in Thailand celebrating my 21st birthday. Chang beer… worst hangover of my life.
In nine days, one third of my life will be over. (Yes, I plan to live to at least 90.)
The big 3-0 birthday has been troubling me ever since I turned 29. I hear life is better in your thirties, but I suppose it could be the whole you’re-getting-older-and-can’t-drink-wine-like-you-used-to-on-a-saturday-night thing that bugs me the most about this birthday. I also think it’s because I’m not where I thought I’d be at 30.
This comes up for me pretty much every time I catch up with friends and family at parties or over coffee. I get to hear about upcoming nuptials or babies on the way, which is all lovely and awesome and I’m genuinely excited and happy for them… but then when they ask what I’ve been up to, even after I excitedly describe my new business and my blog and recent fitness magazine article, the next question is always, “So, are you living with your boyfriend yet? Are you going to have a family?” followed by a sympathetic look and a complete change of subject. (more…)
Unlike last year’s annual non-New Year’s resolutions post, this year I can actually say I accomplished the three goals I set for myself at the end of last year: get my CSCS designation, get published in a print magazine, and qualify for the Boston Marathon. This is one of the reasons why I love having this blog — I can publicly announce things I want to accomplish and hold myself accountable to them, no matter how lofty they may be.
Last weekend I had the pleasure of testing some new ethically produced, locally made yoga and running tights from Breathe Athletic here in Victoria BC. I’ve you’ve never shopped at Breathe, you must — owner Stephanie Hinton sources the most beautiful yoga, fitness and lifestyle apparel for women, all of it made in North America and/or produced ethically and sustainably where possible. Can’t get to her store? Don’t worry — she also sells her product lines online through her website at breatheathletic.com.
But on to the pants! I took this pair of tights from Some Product out for a chilly trail run.
One thing I loved right away about these pants (aside from the eye-popping “Blue Equestrian” print, made-in-Vancouver tag and gorgeous imported Italian — yes, Italian — fabric) was their slight compression-like feeling. (more…)
Most yogis or anyone who has read or watched Eat, Pray, Love will be familiar with malas: those long, beautiful necklaces made out of what appears to be round wooden beads with either a stone or tassel hanging near the navel. Aside from looking gorgeous on anyone from SoCal hippies to New York fashionistas, malas have a much more significant purpose and meaning for the wearer.
A mala, for those of you who aren’t familiar with them, is a strand of beads traditionally used to count the number of times a mantra is recited during meditation. Malas normally consist of 108 beads made out of ‘Bodhi seeds’, which come from the Rudraksha tree. In Hinduism, Rudraksha seeds are said to be the crystallized tears of Shiva, who cried tear of compassion for the welfare of mankind. (more…)
I chose to feature prAna awhile back not only because I loved the look of their funky-patterned yoga leggings and tops, but also because I was impressed by their commitment to sustainability — something I think is definitely lacking with other active wear brands.
“A brand should give much more than it takes from the world”. This has forever been prAna’s simple answer to the complex challenge of sustainability. prAna’s reason to be and to continue on is based on an increasingly mindful use of natural resources, but also on our ability to motivate our community of customers and peer businesses.
Prana is another great California-based yoga and lifestyle apparel brand with a focus on sustainability and making funky, well-fitting pieces with beautiful details. Though I’ve selected a few of my favourite fall pieces below, they also have stuff for guys. Hooray!
While their main focus is on yoga apparel, they do have a nice outdoors collection, too. Their signature styles range from a vibrant and colourful funky-patterned hippy look to something more subdued and plain. They also have some really cute bathing suits and climbing accessories.
Prana is available at most outdoor retailers like MEC and Atmosphere, and online from their website.
From top left: Meadow Top, Julz Burnout Top, Roxanne Printed Legging, Hope Top
I’ve seen a few yogis around town sporting these funky printed yoga leggings from Teeki and they look amazing. Teeki is an eco-concious activewear line based in the United States that uses recycled plastic bottles to make their pants (it takes approximately 25 bottles to make one pair), uses eco-friendly printing methods and are made right in the USA, so their carbon footprint is minimal.
And seriously, look at these prints. They make me want to run around in the desert in search of my spirit animal, or something.
The pants are available in sizes extra small to large and will set you back about $72. You can order them online, or if you live in Victoria, they’re available at Breathe Athletic on Fort Street.