Yoga Strong

In fitness, they talk about adaptation and specificity. Our bodies are remarkable in that they respond to stimulus in order to survive. If we walk or run longer, lift or stretch more, we begin to adapt to those body movements. And this adaptation takes place in very specific ways. If we change the stimulus, even slightly, then our bodies must then again respond to that change. If we always do 5 sets of 5 reps of a bench press, and we switch to 3 sets of 20, our bodies will likely be sore and will eventually adapt to that new rep scheme.

“Outlift a runner; Outrun a lifter”

That is what my t-shirt says that I bought while working at a CrossFit Games Regional event. It follows the CrossFit definition of fitness “Constantly varied, high intensity, functional movements performed at broad time and modal domains”. It means that maybe we’ll not be the Master’s of any sport or fitness activity, but we can adapt pretty well to anything that pops up. If you say run 10 miles and then lift a 200 pound generator into the back of a truck, we could probably do that at the drop of a hat. We are generalists who can do almost anything.

I’m attending Rocket Yoga training at the end of February. So the goal I have is to be Yoga Strong! Using the specificity model, I could focus only on yoga and get there without doing anything else. But then I sacrifice other areas of my life. There are yogis out there who do amazing things. Their strength-to-weight ratio is remarkable. But that is only one kind of strength. Their specificity is yoga. If you asked them to run 2 miles for time or lift a refrigerator, their specific strength may not lend to those activities. They are Yoga Strong. And that’s what I need to be too. But I am a different kind of athlete. I need the quality of life that allows me to do other things as well.

So I am on a program. I love Olympic weightlifting and I think that lends to so many areas of life. I am doing a lot of rowing and skiing on my new Ski Erg by Concept 2. So strength and cardio are there. I am using gymnastics tools like paralletes, rings, and high bar. And I am certainly doing plenty of yoga. This is not a lot different from what I normally do, but my mind is focused on Rocket Yoga. I am also running. I think my waistline impedes my ability to do twists and folds comfortably and, for me, running is the fastest way to reducing body fat. But at the top of the list are bandhas, which I will describe more later. The fitness world would call it “core”, but Ashtangis would refrain from saying that. It plays a huge role in yoga strength.

I wish you well in your goals and pursuits for 2016. Remember, it is good to have specific goals, but your primary goal should be quality of life. Enhance your well-being, both body and soul.

 

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3 thoughts on “Yoga Strong”

  1. This is great Andy. I saw in the top part of the IG, so wanted to check it out. I’m glad I did. I love what you have shared. I’m so happy for you in pursuing more with rocket yoga. It sounded amazing when you explained it a while back. I appreciate the time you offer. Have a great night.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I decided to move way from crossfit to focus on yoga. I hadn’t been doing crossfit for any particularly long period of time, but the focus of crossfit (on everything, to cultivate the highest possible ability in any situation, as you point out) was what drew me to it. That, and the lifting – I love lifting. So making the switch to yoga was very hard for me – I felt like I was leaving the “best” for… not the best. Not that yoga wasn’t good or awesome, but I had held crossfit up on this pedestal for so long that it was hard for me. I think I need to do something similar to what you are doing – incorporate a little of everything into my regimen. I have a bar, a rack, and weights at home. I can still do that. I could look up what the WOD at the box is and modify (and then get off my ass and take a walk and work up to running) so I can be more than YOGA STRONG.

    Liked by 1 person

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