As “fitspo” and healthy living become more popular on social media we have seen an increase in people try out things maybe they would have never tried before. It is truly inspiring to see the things people can accomplish and the amazing support and encouragement that comes along with that.
One of the things I have been most impressed by is the explosion of yoga themed challenges and posts all over my social media. From beginners to people doing insanely flexible things with their body, there has been a push for people to spend a few minutes of time focusing on the way their body moves and just relaxing in the flow of that. With that comes the talk about mobility for the athlete.
For those of us who aren’t quite the yogi and spend 3/4 of our fitness and workout life doing things other than stretching, we sometimes get lost in this world of mobility. I think it is far too common for lifters, crossfitters, athletes, even runners to go on with their days avoiding, or not even giving a second thought to, the amount of mobility your body needs… no deserves. Now I know this is something I have touched on lightly before as over time I have tried to make an effort to incorporate this more into my fitness life. However, just recently I have really fully embraced probably one of the best things that has happened to my crossfit journey…
Mobility is one of the things that is most important in the way our body functions. From athletic performance, to general daily activities, to holding in tension and stress, to how well we sleep at night. All these things can be affected, and ultimately improved upon, through a focus on mobility.
Just a few weeks ago, two of the coaches at my box really encouraged me to look more into this thing that had been blabbing about for a couple weeks and doing themselves for about a month. My one coach said that in just a month of committing to these 20-45 min mobility videos each day his performance and lifts had done a complete 180. He became incorporating a few moves into our warmups and after about 2 weeks of talking about it I bit the bullet.
I signed up for my first free week of RomWod. I truly had no idea what I was getting myself into but I knew I had to just give it a shot. I was also afraid that, like other at home and online video things I have tried, I would lose interest after a day or two and just stop doing it. Boy was I wrong!
Now in the interest of full disclosure, I am discussing RomWod here in the effort to discuss truly how important mobility is and what devoting 20 little minutes a day to mobility can do for you. I have not been in touch with anyone from RomWod. No one knows I am writing this and it is not an advertisement for the company. However, it is certainly an encouragement for those of you who may be like me. If you are at all lost in the world of mobility or think you are doing enough for your body with your pre and post workout stretches, I truly urge you to check out RomWod and see what real mobility work is all about and see the difference this makes for you!
I have never held poses and stretches for 4 or 5 minutes before. I never thought that necessary. But doing so produces a whole new feeling in your body that you would never expect. I have fallen in love with the way my body feels every single day. I recovery faster from the grueling crossfit wods I do every day. I sleep better. I feel more awake and refreshed every day. I don’t have persistent soreness. I haven’t struggled from the dreaded inability to walk post leg day. And my performance is certainly increasing; especially in my efficiency in movements. It has been 3 1/2 weeks now and I have only missed one day of mobility. I make sure to plan for that 20 mins… Whether it is an extra 20 of not being on my phone in the morning – like today – or it is muting the tv during the intermission of hockey or halftimes or football games… That RomWod time has become sacred.
The benefits of mobility range from the tippy top of your head to the end of your toes. Your body can physically feel and your mind is so at ease it is incredible. Working deep breathing with passive stretching truly works magic on your nervous system and your musculoskeletal system. So if you need to start with a fun Instagram yoga challenge, do that! Take 5-10 mins a day working on those poses. But please, unlike what I used to do, don’t complete those week or two week long challenges and then stop. Build from that. Let your body feel all the benefits there are to feel! Watch it change your world… personal and fitness.
Have any of you recently incorporated more mobility into your fitness routines? What kind of benefits have you found from adding more mobility?