I am cheating on running… with yoga.  (You can add that to the list of things I never thought I’d say type.)


In Week 5 of my 9 Week Century Bike Race (100 miles) Training Plan, I decided to mix things up by nixing most of my running days.  Why?


  • I’m not actively training for any running races, so there’s no real reason to run besides the fact that I like it.
  • I struggled to keep up with my cycling schedule because running made me too sore to bike long or hard enough the next day.
  • All that cycling and running was making my hips reaaaally tight.


So far, I’ve swapped out 5 days of running (over 3 weeks) with power yoga classes.  I was thinking about the comparison between the two earlier:


  • Running, obviously, is the ‘harder’ workout minute-by-minute.
  • I took my heart rate a few times in class, and it ranged from 90 bpm to 160 bpm (I have a really high heart rate naturally).  Online estimates say a woman my size burns 300 – 500 calories during 80 minutes of power yoga.
  • However, I’ve swapped out 3.0 or 4.0 mile runs (30 – 40 minutes) with an 80-minute power yoga class… so the end result (calorie burn) might be the same.  I don’t count calories burned or eaten, but it’s an easy way to gauge how hard your body is working during an exercise.
  • I’m not sure how much running helped my cycling, but I can definitely see how power yoga helps.  It stretches out my tight muscles, builds powerful quads, and relaxes me.
  • I’m still squeezing in one long run (about 5.0 to 6.0 miles) a week, so hopefully, I won’t have to start from running scratch when this cycling event is over.
  • Yoga works my entire body (arms, core, legs) instead of pretty much just my legs.  So I feel a bit more balanced all over.


All in all, I’d say it’s a good switch for Century training.  And I’m really having fun improving my poses!


After class, I had the BEST dinner: Ginger Noodles with Tofu, a Rachel Ray recipe which Heather directed me to.


Heather’s review of the recipe said it was a little bland, so I swapped out the regular soy sauce for a Roasted Garlic Soy Sauce (and used a lot) and used about 5 inches of ginger between the two servings for the Husband and I.  I also cooked off the extra broth because I wanted a thicker sauce.


One more modification:  I made it around lunch and then let it sit in the fridge to cool for a few hours.  I heated it up for dinner, but I think letting it sit brought the flavors out more.


Hidden in that bowl was broccoli slaw, mushrooms, tofu, whole wheat pasta, and lots of spice! 🙂


I also had a glass of Gatorade since I’m contained about my electrolyte balance.


Snacks this afternoon included a bowl of shredded wheat, honey, cinnamon, and almond breeze:


And pomegranate Chobani, strawberries, Grape Nuts, and 1/4 cup oatmeal.


A carb-y kind of afternoon because I’m tackling a 60 – 80 (I haven’t decided) bike ride in the morning!  The Century is just in a few weeks… it’s crunch time!


Have you ever fallen in love with a workout?  Which workout did you cheat on?  🙂



  • Estela @ Weekly Bite May 3, 2010, 8:40 pm

    I love yoga! But I’m a runner at heart! I want to be able to sixty years old and still run five miles… so 4 years ago, I cut back on running and started doing hot yoga 3x per week. Because of this, I’m a better and healthier (injury free) runner. 🙂

  • Kelly May 3, 2010, 8:40 pm

    Haha I’m currently cheating on most cardio with yoga- trying to do 31 classes in 31 days. I’m probably going to die a bit, but I’m hoping I’ll be a lot more flexible and strong in the end!

  • Estela @ Weekly Bite May 3, 2010, 8:40 pm

    my grammar/typos are awful! woops…

  • Evan Thomas May 3, 2010, 8:44 pm

    That ginger dish sounds really good! I love ginger and could just eat a root. I bet you were smart to make it beforehand too; there must be something scientific to why Asian food taste ten times better as leftovers.

  • Katie @ Two Lives, One Lifestyle May 3, 2010, 8:46 pm

    I’ve never been a huge yoga fan but haven’t tried that many types. As I’m running more and more, I’m “craving” yoga though, and after the marathon I definitely want to incorporate yoga. Thanks for your thoughts here!

  • Erin (Travel, Eat, Repeat) May 3, 2010, 8:46 pm

    Wow, what a long morning you’re going to have. Hope you found another good book on tape (mp3 haha) to listen to!

  • elaine! May 3, 2010, 8:49 pm

    My Boston marathoner friend credits Bikram for saving her running career when she got a bad injury one year. And as far as cross-training, I did bootcamp at my gym 3x a week and barely ran at all and was able to run the Reno-Tahoe Odyssey last year without much problem. (Except blisters, lol.)

    I’ve been feeling the need to start a yoga regimen lately. Strength and flexibility make your life so much easier and less painful.

  • Jessica @ The Process of Healing May 3, 2010, 8:51 pm

    Power yoga sounds GREAT!!! Yoga is definitely one of the first exercises I want to start back at when I can. People think that yoga isn’t a workout but it really CAN be super tough!

  • Stephanie May 3, 2010, 8:53 pm

    I wouldn’t say I cheated on running, I think it was more of a mutual breakup:) I sprained both my knees in a weightlifting class and had to drop out of race because of it. However, I have fallen in love with yoga and even after my knees completely heal and I can run again I still plan on keep up with yoga.

  • Meg @ Be Fit Be Full May 3, 2010, 8:54 pm

    I fell in love with running a long time ago, but I constantly have to cheat on it with yoga & the elliptical due to IT band/knee injuries. So really I would rather not cheat and just keep on running!

  • lauren @ Eater not a runner May 3, 2010, 8:59 pm

    I’ve been cheating on spinning with running for a while now….and I love it!

  • Jessica @ How Sweet It Is May 3, 2010, 9:01 pm

    I am in love with lifting. I have been for years. I don’t know if it will ever end!

  • Ilana May 3, 2010, 9:08 pm

    I cheated on my lifelong lazy-ass-ness by going to a Pilates class, and FELL IN LOVE immediately. I’ve gone to class at least three days a week since the first time I walked into the studio, and I’m going to get my certification as a Pilates instructor this summer. Best infidelity ever.

  • Hangry Pants May 3, 2010, 9:08 pm

    Your version of the noodles looks delicious!

  • Lorin May 3, 2010, 9:09 pm

    I did my first vinayasa yoga workout last Friday (I don’t have a gym membership, so I don’t go often) but it went well. I really liked how both my arms and legs felt worked out and sometimes would be shaking during the class. However, I didn’t like the fact that during the sun salutation sequence my wrists were killing me! I probably wasn’t doing it right (leaning too far forward?) but that was the only thing. My hamstrings are so tight and I don’t like stretching, so it helps a lot (moreso the hatha yoga on that apsect).

  • Cynthia (It All Changes) May 3, 2010, 9:11 pm

    I fell in love with running and gave up my step classes. I’ve never really gone back. But I was told to change up my workouts for more cross training so I might add some classes back in.

  • Beth @ Beth's Journey to Thin May 3, 2010, 9:12 pm

    Haha I love calling it cheating. I’ve actually just taken up Bikram yoga last Thursday for the first time ever. It was my first time doing any yoga outside of my apartment, and I have done it for 5 of the last 6 days. I just love how it makes me feel and seeing the improvements in my postures. It’s causing me to cheat on my running and biking, though!

  • Claire May 3, 2010, 9:14 pm

    I have done the exact same cheat in the past…It definitely didn’t hurt my running!

  • Lisa (bakebikeblog) May 3, 2010, 9:14 pm

    I wish there were more varied yoga classes near where I live!!!

  • Shawna @ Balancing Me May 3, 2010, 9:17 pm

    I’m in love with Strength Training, particularly P90X at the moment. I’ve always loved lifting weights.

  • Annie@stronghealthyfit May 3, 2010, 9:17 pm

    That meal looks amazing. I had a great tofu dish tonight too! Stir fry 🙂
    I’m totally addicted to yoga, and I think it has helped my running, as well as my stress level.

  • Amy B (Second City Randomness) May 3, 2010, 9:23 pm

    I’ve replaced alot of my weights in the gym with The Shred. So far, I’m happy with it and think the results are great!

  • ashleigh May 3, 2010, 9:25 pm

    Great idea! Since yoga will help you stretch out hopefully you’ll be less sore. Recently I feel in love with spin but I only do it once a week because it hurts my butt so much! 😉

  • Heather (runningwithsass.com) May 3, 2010, 9:26 pm

    when I have the chance to play sand volleyball I will drop ANYTHING to get to do it! running and jumping in the sand for 2-3 hours, now that’s a workout!

  • Whitney@Whitinspired May 3, 2010, 9:37 pm

    I love strength training. There are SO many variations…I never get bored. I get bored easily with cardio :(. I like Yoga, I’m just not advanced enough to attend a power yoga class.

  • Sana May 3, 2010, 9:40 pm

    I cheat on tennis with kickboxing and running. I don’t have enough time in my life to do everything that I want!!

  • Lisa of Lisa at Home May 3, 2010, 9:46 pm

    I’m in love with Pilates! But the studios in the city are so expensive so I’ve had to take a little break for now until the job market picks up

  • Krystina May 3, 2010, 9:58 pm

    Your yogurt bowls always look so beautiful.

    I cheated on yoga with running. Now they’re okay with sharing me, though.

  • Amy* May 3, 2010, 10:05 pm

    I’ve done some yoga, but I don’t think it’s for me. (I kept yawning!) I wouldn’t mind adding a little spice to my running so that I don’t get into a rut. I’m just not sure what else might be right for me.

    And completely off topic, I’m curious if you’ve seen Jessica Simpson’s Price of Beauty. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the show!*

    • Caitlin May 4, 2010, 7:15 am

      I saw one episode (the Africa one) and I thought it was interesting… kind of superficial but cool for VH1. You?

  • Jenna May 3, 2010, 10:09 pm

    Good luck tomorrow!!

  • Kellie May 3, 2010, 10:19 pm

    When I got hurt running I started doing Yoga. It really made my body strong. Even though technically I wasn’t burning as many calories, I was not as hungry for carbs, so it evened out. I am now running more and I miss my Yoga.

  • Kalli@fitandfortysomething May 3, 2010, 10:22 pm

    Yoga is so good for you- how smart. I bet this will help you with your riding much more anyway.

  • Amber K @ sparkpeople May 3, 2010, 10:28 pm

    I still have never fallen in love with any sort of exercise. My loves are more like sewing and reading. I’m just a low-key person? Maybe… =)

    I wish I had a higher heart rate. It is naturally SOOOO slow. I have to do a LOT to get into my target range.

  • Sarah May 3, 2010, 10:30 pm

    I love love love Les Mills Body Step 🙂 It’s my favorite workout class ever!!

  • JenRD May 3, 2010, 11:07 pm

    Have you ever tried coconut water as a natural electrolyte and sugar replacement? You can read the FAQ here http://www.vitacoco.com/benefits.html (I especially like: Helps replenish your body’s fluids after exercising.
    Translation:Your body needs plenty of fluids after the gym. Fluids free of barley and hops. Go figure). The name brands can be expensive, but I have found that Goya makes a much less expensive canned variety, in my supermarket’s Spanish foods section.

    • Caitlin May 4, 2010, 7:16 am

      I’ve tried coconut water before and liked it! But Gatorade is so tasty 🙂

  • Heather (Heather's Dish) May 3, 2010, 11:10 pm

    i LOVE stairclimbers…when i belonged to a gym i totally cheated on running with that and yoga 🙂

  • Michelle @ Give Me the Almond Butter May 3, 2010, 11:30 pm

    I have absolutely fallen in love with rock climbing, and started cheating on my long runs! I know, I know, I’m really bad. I just need to balance my loves now!

  • Lily @ Lily's Health Pad May 3, 2010, 11:36 pm

    I’ve never tried power yoga. I’m not really sure what the difference between power yoga and regular yoga is.

    2 years ago I cheated on running with Body Attack, and now, I would never go back!

  • Angela (ohsheglows) May 3, 2010, 11:49 pm

    im currently cheating on running with mountain biking. I’d rather trail bike than run which has NEVER happened before.

  • Courtney (Pancakes & Postcards) May 3, 2010, 11:52 pm

    I am currently cheating on real workouts with workout DVDs. Where I live there are no gyms or anything, so it is either running in deep sand with African kids chasing me, or DVD workouts. In America, I was a hardcore rock climber (love it), skier in the winter, hiking, etc. with a bit of running. I miss those things so much! Sweating to Jillian Michaels just really does not compare.

  • Tiffany @ Moving Meditation May 4, 2010, 12:49 am

    I have such a hard time balancing my workouts. When I was training for a triathlon, I practiced yoga far less often than I’d like, and then when I started yoga teacher training and then teaching yoga, my running and cycling came to almost a standstill. I am *determined* to begin running again ASAP! I miss it. Thank goodness for spring/summer – I feel much more motivated when it’s light outside later in the evening; some days I used to do both yoga and a light run the same night.

    Also, I wanted to echo what another commenter said about coconut water – it’s a terrific, natural way to replenish electrolytes. I don’t even like coconut, but I don’t mind the flavored coconut water.

  • Natalie @ Keep It Sassy May 4, 2010, 1:11 am

    I saw some Chobani at the store today and it made me think of you and your blog! So of course, I had to get a container to try!

    Exercise wise, I guess I had a pretty intense fling with lifting weights for a while, but I’ll be the first to admit I wasn’t ready to commit to it. Pilates and I had an affair a few years ago, but that ended quickly when I discovered power yoga as well. However, that fizzled out when I started running and taking kickboxing class.

    So basically, I have commitment problems.

  • Wei-Wei May 4, 2010, 1:57 am

    I’ve never done yoga before! I’d really love to take a Power Yoga class… it seems so fun! (But it’s not exactly for beginners, is it?)

    My favourite workout is always, always ballet class. I’m training for my RAD grade 8 ballet exam, and it’s like knocking out 2 – no, 3 – stones with one workout: 1) Exercise, 2) Expression, and 3) Exam preparation! The 3 Ex’s haha.

    Good luck with your Century training! We’re all rooting for you 😀


  • Freya @ Brit Chick Runs May 4, 2010, 2:07 am

    I ALWAYS cheat on running with homeworkout DVDs – but I always cheat on homeworkout DVDs with running! Maybe I’m not the kind of girl who can be committed to one for very long 😛
    Good luck on the epic bike ride today!!

  • Camille May 4, 2010, 2:16 am

    I have been cheating on the elliptical for a very long time. It doesn’t do diddly-squat for me!

  • Sarah (GF vegan) May 4, 2010, 2:31 am

    I have to say, I’ve been cheating on running with yoga for a long time now. I just love yoga too much but don’t have the heart to leave running entirely.

  • Nicole of Raspberry Stethoscope May 4, 2010, 4:46 am

    I fall in and out of love with workouts all the time. My issue is sticking to one thing. I become almost obsessed with one workout and then lose interest. You’d think i would be the same way in my love life, but have been with the same person for 7 years, so good thing it doesn’t flow into my personal life;). Anyway, i’ve been in love with kickboxing, weight lifting classes, yoga, and now of course: swim/bike/run for my tri’s! hehe. I love biking out of all of them.

  • Marina May 4, 2010, 5:43 am

    I adore power yoga, but I haven’t done it much. We don’t have many yoga studios over here, and they are pretty expensive 🙁
    I do love biking and running too, oh, and roller blading.

  • Rachel @ Suburban Yogini May 4, 2010, 5:52 am

    Shall I let you into a little yoga secret? If you concentrate on getting the breathing right your aerobic activity during an 80 minute class will be pretty much the same as a 3-4 mile run. Full yogic breathing during class isn’t easy I know but it’s worth striving for because it strengthens the cardiovascular system as well as any cardio. For realz 🙂

    I know I’m biased when it comes to yoga but still… it’s true.

    Also if you’re cycling so much then you need something to open out your hips and knees.

    I have said it before and I will say it again. Yoga cures everything 😉

  • Jo May 4, 2010, 6:26 am

    Hey Caitlin, I’m not sure if anyone else has recommended it but if you’re concerned about your electrolytes, have you thought about drinking coconut water? The vita coco stuff is great and tastes amazing and is naturally high in electrolytes.

    I’ve never done a yoga class though I have done body balance, which is a combination of yoga, pilates & tai chi and really enjoyed it so might give it a try.

    • Caitlin May 4, 2010, 7:17 am

      tried it before but i only kind of like it. 🙂

      • Heather May 4, 2010, 2:52 pm

        I also wasn’t a big fan of the stuff, but I bought a Vita coconut water that was passion fruit flavor. MUCH better!

  • Sarah (Running to Slow Things Down) May 4, 2010, 7:15 am

    I love yoga! It’s positively one of my favorite “cheater workouts.” 😀 I would love to see a studio open up nearby where I could really delve in and learn some new poses.

    I’ve also fallen in love with biking, although it certainly didn’t happen overnight. 😉 It took some time to adjust, but it’s been a lifesaver now that I can’t run regularly with the injuries.

  • Sarah May 4, 2010, 7:17 am

    I am in looooove with Zumba! Such a fun workout!

  • Carolyn May 4, 2010, 9:11 am

    Since I started running I haven’t been doing much strength training, which I really miss. Now that I’m training for a triathlon, it’s even harder to fit in the strength training.

  • Therese May 4, 2010, 9:23 am

    Spinning! I took one class back in November and, after my butt got back to normal, I LOVED it. I found it much harder than running but I could push myself hard but still close my eyes and just go with it without fear of getting hit by a car!

  • Ali @ Food, Fitness, Fashion May 4, 2010, 11:47 am

    Interesting post! I think yoga really does help other exercises! I can see it had helped my running a lot. I love going to yoga the say after a long run. It helps to stretch out all my sore muscles. Glad you are liking it!

  • Heather May 4, 2010, 11:55 am

    I was forced to give up running (my other love, aside from the hubby) due to a recent injury. I was devastated (and I still might be), however power yoga has filled as much of the void as any other physical activity possibly could.

    And don’t forget, yoga also works the mind!

  • Lauren @ Running Examiner May 4, 2010, 1:09 pm

    I find that yoga is a great compliment to running or cycling. After sustaining an IT band injury (yet again) this spring, I realized that it was time I focus less on running, and more on overall balance. I’ve been doing yoga for almost a decade, but made a commitment to get realllly into it this year. I’ve been running three times a week, and practicing power yoga/ashtanga/bikram three to four times a week. I adore it! I find yoga to be so empowering, and so good for strengthening the mind/body connection. In an odd turn of events, I think yoga makes me *appreciate* running more, too! I think I carry my ‘feel-good, feel-powerful’ yoga mentality over to running, and as a result, I’m no longer so strict with myself about running. (I’m the worst!)

  • Lori May 4, 2010, 2:02 pm

    You are so on the right track doing the power yoga to balance yourself for the riding.
    Im a spin instructor and yes, your hips get so tight with cycling. Yoga is a great way to prevent yourself from injury (believe me, talking from experience)

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