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Why I Incorporate Yoga Into Weight Training

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Why I Incorporate Yoga Into Weight Training
Why I Incorporate Yoga Into Weight Training

When I first started working out, I wanted to build muscle! And that meant a lot of weight lifting, maybe 10 minutes of cardio, and almost nothing else. I stretched a little bit after each session, but they were never deep stretches. After almost a year, I felt pretty stiff. I was slowly losing my flexibility (not that I was very flexible to begin with), and I was getting worried! Then I found yoga.

A long time ago, I thought of yoga as something girls did when they didn't truly want to work out. Yoga didn't burn the calories I wanted, and it didn't build the muscle I wanted either (spoiler alert: I was wrong).

Yoga

My first few times doing yoga, I had just worked out my full body. I was immediately more relaxed, less stiff, and my muscles didn't hurt as much. It felt like I went through a body rehab. I was also sore in muscles I didn't know I wasn't targeting during my normal weightlifting routine! That was the moment that changed my perspective on yoga. I realized that yoga works you out in ways that balance, or even add, to your weightlifting routine. It's like yin and yang.

After a few yoga sessions, my weightlifting actually improved. I had more range of motion, and I felt like my muscles weren't so stiff that I had to take a day off. Yoga improved my weightlifting, and weightlifting helped me in yoga. I had found a beautiful balance!

Yoga and Weight Training

Speaking of balance, a long time ago, I tried to do a headstand. I had no idea what I was doing. After building up some muscle (and learning some balancing tips from yoga), I finally did one! And it wasn't just because I had the strength. It wasn't just because I knew technique either. It was a combination of both: I finally had the core strength, but yoga also taught me how to focus and activate the muscles I needed. It was a magical moment!

While yoga gives you the deep stretches your body needs, it also gives you the mental soundness your mind needs — I really appreciate how much concentration you need for your body and mind to work together. When you go to the mat, it really is a place where you can leave your worries behind and focus on what your body is telling you.

Balancing Yoga and Weight Training

I truly believe in a balanced lifestyle, whether it's indulging a little in your meals or not always forcing yourself to exercise, so finding yoga was another way to add balance in my life. I highly encourage you to incorporate yoga into your routine. While it can get expensive to attend classes, the SWEAT app offers a 12 week BAM yoga program for just $19.99 a month — and you can do it from the comfort of your own home. Give it a try and let me know if you see a difference in your gym routine!

Disclaimer: This blog post is not intended to replace the advice of a medical professional. The above information should not be used to diagnose, treat, or prevent any disease or medical condition. Please consult your doctor before making any changes to your diet, sleep methods, daily activity, or fitness routine. Sweat assumes no responsibility for any personal injury or damage sustained by any recommendations, opinions, or advice given in this article.
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