Adina Crawford: Yoga Can Make You a Better Runner - 06/24/2020


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Adina Crawford - Yoga Can Make You a Better Runner

Running dramatically changed Adina’s life, transforming her from a non-athlete to a source of fitness inspiration. One of the keys to Adina’s athletic ability and mental strength is yoga, a practice she believes everyone can benefit from.

Adina shares with Coach Claire her approach to yoga in the classes she teaches, how to get started, some of the best poses for runners, as well as some helpful tips. She talks about what mindfulness means to her, as well as the benefits of cross training. Most of all, she teaches us that with a positive attitude and a willingness to try something new, it’s never too late to transform your life.

In addition to being a runner and cyclist, Adian is also a certified PYTT 200 and 50 YSTT yoga instructor specializing in Vinyasa, Sculpt, and Restorative. She is a mentor, motivator, advocate, and community influencer who serves as an ambassador for Black Girls Run, HoneyStinger, Nuun, Black Girls Do Bike (Shero), and ZOOMA National. She is also a FitPro for Athleta and serves on the Board of Directors for Black Girls Run Foundation.

Adina has a fitness blog and has been featured in various online articles, podcasts, and participated with the Brooks Running shoe campaign. In addition, she has taught at various locations including Lululemon, Athleta, private events, family reunions, private schools, and local fitness centers.

In 2016, Adina completed her first Marathon (Chicago), numerous half marathons, several indoor triathlons and cycling events in various cities. She is recognized as a strong motivator and advocate for health, fitness, and wellness to her communities. Her goal is to bring more diversity and awareness to the mat and spread the love of all the benefits of yoga coupled with other activities. YOGA IS FOR EVERY-BODY.

Questions Adina is asked:

2:07 You are a runner, a cyclist, and a yoga instructor. How do those three activities complement each other? How did you get started?

3:09 How does yoga balance out running and cycling? What kind of yoga are we talking about?

3:32 Walk me through restorative yoga. If I show up at your class, what are we doing if I’m a total newbie?

4:48 You've been quoted as saying yoga is for every BODY. What do you mean by that?

5:47 How did you get started in yoga?

6:15 One thing I have heard people say is that you don’t want to be too flexible as a runner because you want those tight springs so that you can run fast. So some of the athletes that I’ve coached have been sort of hesitant to get super flexible. What do you think about that?

7:07 How have you changed your practice with the whole pandemic?

7:59 What do you use yoga sandbags for? Can you go into detail about that?

8:40 What are some of the best yoga moves for runners?

9:48 With pigeon pose, a lot of runners are really tight in their hips. I know that you can do a couple of variations on pigeon pose that can kind of hit you in different spots. Can you talk a little bit about that? Your hips, or sometimes it hits you more in the hamstrings. Can you talk about some variations for the hips?

10:56 You touched a little bit at the beginning talking about mindfulness. Can you talk about the benefits of mindfulness with yoga and how it relates to running, and how it’s different than the mindfulness you might experience on a good run?

12:02 Can you talk a little bit about breathing? I know breathing is really important in yoga, and obviously it’s important in running too. Can you talk a little bit about what we’re supposed to be doing when we’re breathing?

13:16 Are there any other breathing techniques that we can use when we’re not practicing yoga or when we’re not running? Just anything else besides the deep breaths? I know several yoga types have different kinds of, you know, quick breaths in and then quick breaths out, and I’m not super familiar with it, so I was wondering if you could talk a little bit more about that?

14:49 Another thing kind of related to mindfulness is the idea of being present. If I think about running or if I’m in a race or something like that and if I let my head get too far ahead of worrying about, “This hurts. I should slow down,” or “I should stop. I should quit,” your brain goes a mile a minute and a lot of people who practice yoga have a better time with staying present. So how do you teach your students to stay present and what’s a good practice for someone who’s new to this?

16:07 Do you have specific thoughts about how to build your confidence? Because I know sometimes if you’re on a race for example, you might not have so much confidence that you’re going to get to the finish line in the time that you want, or whatever your goal is. Do you have a confidence practice?

17:03 You started running a little bit later in life. Can you talk about your running journey and how that all started? I think it’s an inspiring story.

18:31 How did you get started; what was that first day and first month like?

19:44 Where does yoga fit into your running journey?

20:56 I find the mindfulness stuff the hardest part of it, not so much the physical stuff. Do you have any tips for that?

22:30 I often think if we thought of running more like yoga, that we’re just practicing every day, I think we’d be a lot less hard on ourselves.

23:40 I love that you look to gratitude. Gratitude certainly helps us put things in a little bit more perspective, don’t you think?

23:55 Are gratitude and having a grateful heart things that you talk about in your yoga classes too?

24:52 Do you think doing yoga is efficient enough for a runner’s strength training or do people still need to lift some weights too?

25:45 I would love to hear some success stories about some of the people that you've inspired to get moving through running and yoga. Do you have any of those for us to hear?

Questions I ask everyone:

28:03 If you could go back and talk to yourself when you first started running, what advice would you give yourself?

28:22 What is the greatest gift that running has given you?

28:37 Where can listeners connect with you?

Quotes by Adina:

“You make yourself available, you learn those poses, and you can do it.”

“Mindfulness in my view is a nice little mental health tool to carry with you.”

“Breath is the foundation of yoga.”

“I know that it is all about me when I’m on that pavement so I can’t compare myself to the next person or next person.”

“Rejoice in the fact that you are able to move.”

Take a Listen on Your Next Run

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Mentioned in this podcast:

Yoga Sandbags

Fleet Feet

Black Girls Run

Runners Connect Winner's Circle Facebook Community

RunnersConnect Facebook page

Follow Adina on:



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