Tuesday, September 6, 2011


This is written from the perspective of someone practicing a full sequence (and change) five to six days a week.

I could probably add to this and get real specific.

1. Eat More
Food and nutrition are highly personal and emotionally charged practices and beliefs.

This suggestion isn't about the content of your food, however, that is veg, vegan, omni, what-have-you. It's about quantity.

I've had conversations with lots of people who practice Ashtanga Vinyasa and, y'know, I've been around for a couple years, so I've seen how some Ashtanga Vinyasa yogis and yoginis eat.

If you commit to Crossfit a couple times a week, you are going to need to ratchet up your food intake.

This is usually not a problem because you will be ridiculously hungry after doing both.

I only have one suggestion as to what you should eat if you do Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga plus Crossfit, though mostly it's a suggestion of what not to eat — processed foods.

2. No Really — Eat More
By "eat more," I don't mean an extra bowl of popcorn, an extra spoonful of cottage cheese, more yogurt, or an extra banana.

You're going to need to put away some protein, fat and carbohydrate in order to recover from your efforts and support your future practices.

3. Sleep More
At least nine hours a night. Seriously.

This is usually not an issue because you will be tired. You will need the sleep.

However, you will dig yourself into a hole if you try to slide by doing both Ashtanga Vinyasa and Crossfit (plus work, family, happy hour, pranayama, meditation, puja) on six hours a night

4. Off Days Are Off
Saturdays and moon days are opportunities for reflection and relaxation. Do nothing.

5. Less Flexible
I'm not going to sugar-coat it for you: high reps plus reduced range of motion (ROM) means your nervous system will shorten muscles accordingly.

You will get less flexible by doing hundreds (Hundreds? Yes, hundreds.) of pull-ups, push-ups, squats, thrusters, dips, muscle-ups, et cetera, et cetera.

Good thing we are not practicing Yoga to get more flexible, right?



6. More Strength
Maybe you trade off a bit of flexibility — for a period of time.

You will, however, get stronger.

If you've never done resistance training, like I hadn't, you will get a shit-ton stronger.

Your maximal strength, strength-endurance, and endurance will increase (though these last two will diminish when you stop practicing Crossfit). 

7. Enjoy Yourself
Ashtanga Yoga's not so hard. Neither is Crossfit.

I mean, they're both challenging, and some days are like a warm, effortless shower and some are like a root canal, but that's not unique to either discipline.

A serious-as-death attitude doesn't help, either on the mat or in the gym. Plus those people aren't as much fun to be around.

So go ahead and enjoy yourself, both on the mat and in Crossfit.