So, what's a runner chica to do?
Cue Runner's World magazine. If you're not already subscribed, please consider it. It's pretty inexpensive and has great resources. (I'm not affiliated with them.) I love that they reach a balance between having articles about competitive racing and having articles for the eternal newbie runner, like me. Yes, I'm training for a half marathon, but I'm certainly not setting any records in the process.
And their website -- oh, their website -- rocks. It has resources on anything from shin splints (shudder) to weak butt syndrome (just trust me on that one).
Other than Dr. Metzl's videos, which did help me kick shin splints and I'm using to help with current piriformis, they have several 30-minute yoga videos specifically for runners.
Yes, 30 minutes. Yes, you can find time to squeeze one in. I just did tonight after a very, very long day. Sure, it was me and Rebecca Pacheco at 10:15 at night, but I got it done.
I highly recommend you get a yoga block (got mine at Target like this one, cheap) if you're not very flexible (a.k.a., you're human and not named Rebecca Pacheco). She also recommends a towel or belt. I use one of my tae kwon do belts because it's handy and the perfect size for the exercises.
I am by no means a "yoga person," but I've read a lot about the health benefits and several of my health care providers (read: sports med doc, physical therapist and chiropractor) have all recommended yoga as a good cross-training/stretching part of my training.
I really appreciate Rebecca's tips on how to modify the movements for mere mortals like me. I always take her up on the option.
In the past few months, I've also tried tai chi videos from the local library and live streaming from Amazon.com. Love the concept and can certainly keep up, but I never felt like I was exercising.
These yoga videos are not terribly easy, but certainly do-able with accommodations. And when I'm done, I have to admit that I really am more relaxed. Yeah, even after the third load of laundry.
What do you do to cross train? Have you ever tried yoga? How about tai chi?