Does yoga count?

Saturday, August 02, 2008

I've been away from Sparkpeople for a few days due to some computer issues, and am so glad to be able to log on again! The topic I've been wrestling with for the past few days is whether yoga "counts" as my exercise. It's kind of a silly topic, really, because all that should matter is whether I feel like it works for me, but I'm still trying to figure this out.

I do vinyasa yoga at a yoga studio, where all of the classes are 90 minutes and are pretty intense. There is definitely "final relaxation" time for the last ten minutes of class or so, where you lie on the mat and melt, but most of the class is quite intense - a lot of exercises that really push your muscles to the limits. I sweat a lot and always feel like I've gotten a good workout (I made my husband come with me one day and he was dying by about 15 minutes into class!), but for some reason I am hung up about counting it as my workout. I think this is because I'd only ever done yoga before at a gym, where it was a 60 minute, kind-of-boring activity that I thought was a waste of time.

So the question is, do I focus on the fact that I really enjoy yoga, and use my spare time to focus on my yoga practice, or do I keep forcing myself to go to the gym (which I don't enjoy) and do the elliptical or something because it's better "exercise"?
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Yoga totally counts!!! Yoga conditions you and allows you to move and work your body in ways that can burn more calories than running.

    3613 days ago
    Hi there,

    I don't know what your budget is, but one thing you could definitely do to settle the matter is to wear a heart rate monitor that tracks your calories burned. I have a Polar F11 and I love it, I hear great things about the F6 as well.

    IMO Yoga can be great exercise and I've benefitted greatly from the times it was part of my routine. If you are still not sure a good HRM could settle it for sure.

    >PS be sure to stop by the August Challenge thread on SparkBoston - we are tracking calories burned during August and you could be a great plus for the team!
    3613 days ago
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