BEND IT TO YOUR WILL
I’ve done 39 marathons and five ultra-marathons. When I took up yoga seven years ago I was waking up like the tin man. The difference in my flexibility between then and now is chalk and cheese.
A lot of guys prefer to do yoga at home because they’re sheepish about how rigid they are. My advice: practise with a yogi. Two Warrior poses can look the same, but only one is hitting the right muscles.
FLEX & FLEXIBILITY
You’ll get improvements in the weights room after a few months on the mat. I now have a deeper squat and a freer bench press. The result: more muscle.
HURTS SO GOOD
Yoga builds mental toughness the same as running and weights do. Can you get up that steep incline? Can you squeeze out that extra rep? Similarly, yoga begins when you want to stop. There’ll be times mid-pose when you’ll think, I’ve had enough! Breathe through it. The rewards will come.
Yoga will make you a better runner by loosening your hips. Where my stride length had been short, I’m now getting an extra 15 per cent each stride with the same output. I’ve sliced 13 minutes off my marathon PB.
STRIKE A POSE
Still want to take this journey by yourself? Here are my four best yoga poses for men. Upward Dog. Downward Dog. Standing Forward Bend. Cat Cow.
IN FOR REPAIR
My weekly split is 4 x run, 3 x strength, 2 x yoga, 2 x infrared sauna, 1 x flotation. That’s five recovery sessions, whereas when I was 20 I might have done one a month. If I could go back in time, that’s what I’d change. I used to think more was better when it came to hard training, but it’s not.