Sunday, 8 January 2012

Core blimey

guv'nor, that's not a very original pun...but I have been indulging in a regular* stretching and core strengthening programme, courtesy of a DVD presented by an Aussie woman named Sherelle...or LeAnni...or one of those New Age names. I read an article recently that claims that your memory starts to deteriorate in your mid forties; I would post you a link, but I can't remember where I saw it...

The DVD is called Yogalates and is, unsurprisingly, a combination of swimming and kite-surfing. They are two activities that, in the comfort of one's own lounge, mostly involve stretches and core work. Leonora (or whatever her name is) is one of those incredibly flexible, yet irritating, people, who have you bending into positions you've not been able to explore since puberty hit and your bones calcified; you, sweating, panting, shaking, hurting; she, comfortable, relaxed, talking in one of those singsong voices that  grown-ups use to small children.

She makes manifold interesting statements during the DVD; 'feel where the breath is moving in your body' (my lungs, mostly); 'keep breathing' (world-class advice); 'this exercise will aid your digestion' (that's a euphemism for 'make you fart a lot' right?)...but it is, amazingly, starting to work. My heels are getting alarmingly close to the floor during downward-facing dog; my 'warrior' is looking more warlike; I almost know my 'balasana' from my elbow. My hips are feeling looser, I'm sitting up taller and I've survived a fifty mile week unscathed.

So is it making any difference to the quality of my running? Absolutely no idea, but I'm going to stick with LaRochelle and her strange contortions for the duration and see what happens.

* remember, regular doesn't mean the same as frequent; Halley's Comet is pretty regular at once every 76 years.

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