Yoga Practice & Fitness Routine
It had been a while since I did a yoga and fitness post and I wanted to share my progress on both my practice and my workout routine. If you’ve followed me for a while now, you’ll know that fitness and a balanced diet are really important to me; for a long time I was embarrassed and uncomfortable about exercising and while I may not have been over weight, I was definitely unfit and I wanted to change that. A few years ago I started out with home cardio workouts but I never really enjoyed it, I tried running, which I did enjoy more but found hard to fit into my daily routine when I moved and started working in London. Then I found yoga and learned things about myself that I never knew I was capable of.
Last November as part of #Yesvember I joined a local gym as I wanted to balance out my yoga practice with some weight training and cardio. I try to workout between 4 and 5 times a week, rotating the muscles groups I focus on each session. As a general rule of thumb you should work related muscle groups together, for example you should always balance abdominal work with back muscles, as each support the other, like this legs and glutes, and chest and arms go together nicely.
When I started back in November I did a session with a personal trainer who advised me on exercises and machines would best help me achieve the results I was looking for; it’s really important to at least do an induction with a professional because they will not only show you how to use machines and exercises to do, but show you correct form. You should never under estimate the effect of correct form, it can prevent injury and stain on joints but also insure that your getting the most out of the exercises you’re doing, if you’re unsure, ask someone.
In a general workout session I usually start with 20-3o minutes of cardio, followed by about 40 minutes to an hour of weight training, depending on how busy the machines are and what muscle groups I’m working, I then finish with 10-15 minutes of Yoga to stretch out the muscles and decompress. Since I started going to the gym I am less stress and sleep better, my appetite has increase, my body fat decreased and I have gained muscle weight.
With regards to pre and post workout routine, I usually drink a cup of coffee about 20 minutes before I workout, caffeine is proven to increase metabolic rate meaning it helps burn more calories during cardio. If I’m hungry I eat a protein snack with my coffee, either my own peanut powerballs or a Bounce Ball. After I finish I drink a whey protein shake (this is the one I got most recently); as a vegetarian I have to be sure I’m ingesting enough protein to help my muscles recover.