Diabetes Discovers New Sport's : Yoga

As the athletics season is starting to wind down, we've all enjoyed watching the IAAF World Championships in Moscow and the Diamond League meets around Europe. And I've enjoyed my season competing around England and Wales. Traditionally as time leads into September, track and field athletes tend to begin thinking about their 'off season'.

Off season training can mean different things to different people, for most it's a time to assess the season that's been before, set goals for the indoors and keep training light and fun. It's also a time for the coaches to recuperate and start planning the sessions for the year ahead. Many training groups tend to take the whole month of September off, and athletes can choose to do nothing or to do their own training. I've gone with the latter, because experience has taught me that the longer time you have off then the harder it is to get back into training. And the winter months are by far and large the hardest months of the training calendar, so the further the head start you can give yourself the better.

Mostly due to convenience for the off season I have joined my local private gym, as it has all of the weight lifting equipment I need. But the gym also has the added benefit of a large number of classes available every week. So to stay fit and strong out of normal training, I've been giving the classes a try. So far it has been a very humorous situation trying new activities for the first time. My first 'trial' was yoga. I'd never done anything like it before, in fact the closest I'd really come to yoga was static stretching at the end of a track session.

It began when we all got our mats out, took our shoes and socks off whilst quite modern music played quietly in the background. And for the next hour we made our way through what I believe to be the basic movements of yoga. Slowly transitioning from one position to the next, and quite often holding the shape for a minute or more until my muscles were shaking from the exertion. The whole experience was very relaxing and I can believe the stories of people falling asleep whilst doing it. As the combination of the warm room, softly lilting music and slow movements would easily rock anyone to sleep.

But luckily I stayed awake and the result at the end was that I felt really supple and stretched out. That my muscles felt relaxed, but that they'd worked hard. Overall I enjoyed the experience of yoga, although I don't think I'll be giving up athletics for it anytime soon. However, I would definitely like to continue with it and I think it would be the great finish to a tough session, or a weekend of competing. Even when the off season is over and I'm back into sprint training my downward dog could still have a part to play!


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My blog takes you through a daily look at sport, diabetes and everything in between. As an athlete that lives with type 1 diabetes I want to let you into news, views and all that is important to both of my passions.

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