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Get in shape for summer with some yoga. (And get a $50 head start on gear.)

thAlthough the light is returning to Anchorage, summer is still quite some time off. That’s just as well, since I am sadly out of shape after far too many hours in front of the computer.

Maybe you’re as creakified as I am after a long winter. One possible answer: yoga. Yep, yoga, which provides gentle stretches of deskbound muscles and also de-stresses minds tied in knots about the tasks performed at those desks.

I took several yoga classes in Seattle and I really, really need to get back to it. Podcasts to start, maybe, and a class at the YMCA or some other Anchorage location.

Whoever wins this week’s giveaway can get a $50 head start on yoga gear, thanks to the Sports Authority. 

That retailer has donated a $50 gift card to call attention to its new Yoga Shop, a line of clothing and accessories for beginners all the way up to “the ultimate yogi.” These things look quite nice. Soybu Killer Caboose

For example, its Soybu line of yoga pants are lightweight and moisture-wicking, and come in styles you wouldn’t be embarrassed to be seen in outside the yoga studio. 

These are nothing like my old yoga pants, which cost me $5 from Walgreens back in 2005. I changed out of as soon as the classes were over. Wouldn’t even wait for a bus in them. Yep, they’re pretty sad.

Bring your own mat (at least)

Q. How many yoga practitioners does it take to change a light bulb?

A. Only one, but she needs a block and a bolster and a strap and a blanket…

But seriously: Yoga doesn’t have to be an expensive form of exercise, but some basics are necessary. I’d recommend getting your own mat, for starters.

Gaiam Mats Blocks TowelsThe winner could also use that gift card toward blocks, towels or other items by Aneka and Gaiam. If you plan to work out at home (and you should), then the mat and blocks in particular will make your practice more effective.

Or consider sports bras, tank tops, and pants or capris so you can get  satisfying studio sessions without revealing too much of, um, your inner self.

Want to see more? Visit the Sports Authority’s yoga line.

Want to win the gift card? Enter up to five different ways:

To enter:

If you do any (or all!) of these things, please leave separate, additional comments to get credit for each entry.

The deadline is 7 p.m. PDT Tuesday, April 23. If I don’t hear back from the winner by 5 p.m. Wednesday, April 23, I’ll pull another name.

Note: While the Sports Authority chain donated the gift card, this is not a sponsored post, i.e.,  I do not receive any payment for running it.

And: If yoga isn’t your thing, I hope you’ll do some kind of gradual strengthening and stretching before flinging yourself back into spring and summer activities. Don’t sit on your butt with a beer and bag of chips all winter and then, on the first nice day of the year, try to mow the lawn and trim the hedges and play pickup softball and bring the patio furniture down from the attic.

Or go ahead. Do all of that. After all, your chiropractor has kids to put through college.


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183 Comments

  1. Valerie

    Thanks for the giveaway! I’m trying to get back into doing yoga regularly.

  2. Valerie

    I subscribe via Google Reader RSS.

  3. Valerie

    I liked Surviving and Thriving on FB.

  4. Just began working on building strength and flexibility! =)

    • how timely! i would definitely enjoy a yoga gift card. i have been doing yoga for a couple of years & i have seen the improvements. i feel good after every class! it’s definitely worth trying!

  5. thanks for the giveaway

  6. I subscribe to your emails

  7. I like you on facebook

  8. I follow you on twitter-grandmasreading

  9. I like to do Pilates which requires the same type of clothes. Thanks for having this giveaway.

  10. lostAnnfound

    I need something to get me moving after the winter. Thanks for the giveaway!

  11. lostAnnfound

    I follow you via RSS

  12. Marilina

    I could use some work out gear. I could use a yoga mat.

  13. Marilina

    I follow you via e-mail too.

  14. Barb in Phx

    I think my yoga pants might be circa 2005 as well. Would love to win the gift card.

  15. Barb in Phx

    I follow Surviving and Thriving on Facebook.

  16. Barb in Phx

    I subscribe via RSS.

  17. thanks for the giveaway!! this would be great for spring/summer!

  18. Thanks for the giveaway. I follow using bloglovin’

  19. My sister has done yoga for years and extoles its benefits all the time. She has been trying to get me to do it for ever. Maybe now that I am old and creaky, it is a good time to start.

    • Donna Freedman

      A close relative has severe scoliosis and has been doing yoga for several decades. When a new doctor got a look at her X-ray, he told her that most cases like this he’s seen can no longer walk. The relative practices yoga every morning and takes a class every week. If I were one-tenth as strong and flexible as her I’d feel accomplished.

  20. Subscribed to your RSS feed.

  21. Like you on Facebook.

  22. I follow you on Twitter.

  23. My brother is a yoga fanatic, and I totally need some sort of fitness added to my life

  24. I would love to learn yoga and am looking for a beginners class.

  25. i follow you on facebook

  26. Barbara Calder

    Yoga is great but walking is my thing (I have issues w/ all my joints dislocating which makes yoga a bit interesting)but I often can be spotted wearing yoga gear. Would love to win a sports authority gift card.Thanks

  27. Barbara Calder

    I follow on facebook.

  28. Barbara Calder

    I receive emails from Surviving and Thriving.

  29. I would like to give Yoga a try.

  30. Follow by email

  31. SharonG

    This is great timing Donna. I just started doing a pilates DVD that I picked up from Goodwill. The hip pain has been reduced already. I’m encouraged and hopeful that I can stop going to the Pain Management Doc. Wanted some new workout clothes and a yoga dvd but it’s hard to spend money on “caring” for myself. Thanks for writing your articles. I read them on Facebook and they always seem to apply to my life.

  32. Follow on Twitter

  33. And follow on Facebook

  34. Terrific article for Woman’s Day magazine (April), Donna!!! As I was reading your post here at S&T about your DF’s dad’s passing, I wondered if you’ve considered writing a few pieces for AARP’s magazine? Congratulations on your new freelance writing path. 🙂

    • Donna Freedman

      I haven’t seen the Woman’s Day issue yet, so I’ll take your word on how it turned out. As for AARP, it hasn’t been on my radar (although I did sell them one piece probably a dozen years ago) to look for more work, but certainly worth keeping in mind.
      Thanks for reminding me to go look for the magazine.

  35. Thanks for the giveaway. I would love to win this prize!

  36. I would love to win.

  37. I follow you on Facebook.

  38. I love YOGA. Please enter me in the contest!

  39. Excellent suggestions.

  40. Facebook too.

  41. Oh I could really use a kick in the butt to get back to yoga.

  42. I subscribe by RSS.

  43. I follow on twitter.

  44. would love to win some yoga gear….thanks for the consideration!

  45. Katherine

    I subscribe via RSS

  46. Samantha

    Would loooove to stock up on some new workout gear!

  47. Samantha

    Facebook

  48. Would love to win this- and even if I don’t, namaste .

  49. I am a Facebook fan.

  50. I subscribe via RSS.

  51. I never miss your posts! Would love some new yoga pants

  52. Would love to win.

  53. I subscribe via email. Thanks!

  54. I would love to win as I just bought a 10 class yoga pass via Groupon.

  55. I subscribe via Google Reader (and have no idea what I’ll do when it goes away!).

  56. I follow you on twitter (@kaylynnakers).

  57. I liked your Facebook page.

  58. Diana B

    It would be pretty cool to win this!

  59. I like you on facebook.

  60. Another great prize. Thanks Donna

  61. I subscribe to your rss feed.

  62. I receive your emails too.

  63. Diana B

    I subscribe via reader.

  64. What a great giveaway. I would love to win some new yoga clothes.

  65. I subscribe via RSS.

  66. Thanks for the giveaway!

  67. I like you on FB!

  68. Sarah VanDeventer

    I have been dreaming about some yoga blocks!!!

  69. Ro in San Diego

    Knee surgery behind me and life is returning to normal which includes wearing yoga pants all weekend long even though I’m not going to yoga class yet. With cute wedge sandals and a fake tan! I live in California…

    I would love to win! I subscribe by email.

    • Donna Freedman

      Glad to hear that surgery is behind you. Seattleites wear a lot of yoga pants out in public, too. Anchorage residents, not so much.

  70. Ro in San Diego

    I subscribe by Facebook too.

  71. Liked on Facebook

  72. Looks like there’s lots of compation for this one : )
    Subscribe via e-mail

    • Donna Freedman

      Your have as good a chance as anyone — the random number generator does not play favorites. 🙂

  73. I would love to win this card.

  74. I follow via email and you are on my blog roll.

  75. Harry Martin

    I was just talking with a friend and he suggested yoga. Perfect timing

  76. Harry Martin

    I subscribe via email

  77. Harry Martin

    I follow you on Facebook.

  78. Adrianna

    Thanks for the emails! Would love to get a pair of yoga pants and a top for my yoga practice.

  79. KHBride

    I’d love new yoga pants! They have some really cute ones too!

  80. KHBride

    I follow via email

  81. KHBride

    I follow via Facebook & twitter as @KHBride

  82. Diana B

    I like you on Facebook.

  83. Thank you for the generous giveaway!

  84. I subscribe via email

  85. I follow Surviving and Thriving on Twitter

  86. I follow Surviving and Thriving on Facebook

  87. Thank you!

  88. Thanks Donna for another wonderful giveaway. I used to practice yoga all the time during college and got away from it. I’ve had some lower back pain so I just started up again with my Wii Fit and I also have a yoga dvd (bought used).

    I’d love to get some blocks or an extra pair of pants.

  89. Melissa F

    Perfect timing! It is starting to get nice here and PA and I just started thinking about what I can do to take off a few pounds. I have thought about yoga before. I was just browsing craigslist looking to possibly purchase a piece of someone else’s unwanted exercise equipment but then I have to wonder, where will I put it in my small home. Yoga might be a lot cheaper and items would take up a lot less space. I just have to get my mind and body in gear and try to stick to some sort of exercise plan along with healthier eating habits. Now that I am over 40, its not as easy to lose weight but I do realize the importance of being healthy, strength training, cardio and so on. I surely have to find something I enjoy so I have a better chance of sticking to it. Anyway, enough rambling, thanks for the giveaway and good luck to everyone planning to get healthier. Take care, Melissa

  90. I would love to get my creaky body into Yoga… I used to do pilates and loved it.

  91. I would love to get my creaky body into Yoga… I used to do pilates and loved it. (subscribed on email)

  92. I subscribe by email. Would love this card!

  93. Angela Crow

    I just started taking yoga. Some money towards gear would come in very handy.

  94. I could really use some de-creakifying and exercise! Maybe some cute new workout outfits and gear would be the motivation I need! I subscribe by email, and love your work! Thank you!

  95. Vero A.

    I subscribe via emali

  96. Vero A.

    I subscribe via email

  97. Vero A.

    I like you on FB

  98. Vero A.

    I love your giveaways!!

  99. Alissa A

    I’m an email subscriber.

  100. Kristen

    Another great giveaway!! I subscribe via email.

  101. Kristen

    I would love the extra motivation to get back into yoga. I also like you on Facebook!

  102. Kristen

    Annnddd I follow yo on Twitter (@kchowy) 🙂

  103. I get you by email.

  104. Also follow by Facebook.

  105. And then search online for other articles of interest.

  106. Yoga would help my health!

  107. I also subscribe via email. Thanks for the giveaway!

  108. Although I’m about as flexible as a 2’x 4′, I am a yoga devotee and try to make it part of my weekly routine. Thanks for the extra wonderful giveaway!

  109. I follow your posts via email

  110. I follow on twitter (moeyshay)

  111. I follow on fb (Moey Shay)

  112. I subscribe via RSS

  113. Had to stop running because of bad hips. Would love to try yoga.

  114. I would love to win!

  115. email subscriber

  116. facebook friends

  117. Sarah L

    A great give away! I had my 2nd a few months back, and am wondering if I will ever fit into my old clothes again. I do need to exercise a little!

  118. Sarah L

    I get your emails. Usually read them before anything else, too!

  119. I’ve been thinking about trying yoga.

  120. I would love some yoga gear!

  121. I am an email subscriber

  122. Caroline Kipps

    Thanks for the giveaway! Sounds super for my stretching and Pilates!

  123. I follow you on twitter @drmomoftwo

  124. Christine

    Thanks, Donna.

  125. I run, and when I have time, I take yoga. It’s a good balance, and I wouldn’t mind having a new yoga mat.

  126. I subscribe via RSS.

  127. Debra K

    Thanks for the giveaway.

  128. Debra K

    I follow you via RSS

  129. Debra K

    I also follow you on Facebook.

  130. I enjoy all your stories!

  131. Samantha

    I would love to win this giveaway – yoga is my exercise of choice!

  132. Samantha

    I subscribe via email.

  133. I love yoga

  134. I follow on Facebook

  135. Samantha

    I subscribe via RSS.

  136. Samantha

    I follow you on Twitter.

  137. Samantha

    I like you on Facebook.

  138. It would be nice to start getting into shape and this would help.

  139. Rachael

    I love going to yoga classes as it is a great way to destress. I could always use more clothes!

  140. Rachael

    I follow on fb as well

  141. I subscribe via Email and would love this card. I’m an avid Yoga lover and was just thinking it would be nice to have my own block and strap!

  142. I also like you on Facebook.

  143. I also follow you via Twitter.

  144. Rebekah

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  145. ImJuniperNow

    Like a yoga pose, I go in all directions to read you.

    Thanks!!!

  146. Would love this!! I do hot yoga 3x/week, so I run out of sports bras pretty quickly!!

  147. Kathryn

    I subscribe via email. This would be great! I love yoga although am a little bit out of practice.

  148. Jessica

    I could use a new pair of yoga pants!

  149. Jessica

    I also subscribe via email.

  150. Nicole (Moore) Berry

    Hi Donna!

    My SIL is trying to get me into yoga–this would be a great starting point! Thanks for offering it.

    I’ve subscribed and am leaving an email.

    Regards,

    Nicole

  151. Kristen

    Thanks for the post Donna! I have been meaning to get back to yoga and I think now is as good a time as any.

  152. Rebekah

    I like you on Facebook.

  153. Stefanie Gladden

    i love sports authority!! thanks for the chance!

  154. Stefanie Gladden

    subscribed to rss feed

  155. Stefanie Gladden

    following on twitter – stephcouponsxx

  156. Stefanie Gladden

    liked on facebook – Steph Couponsx

  157. Beverley

    Thank you for the opportunity.
    Bev

  158. Beverley

    I receive your emails & love your postings.
    Bev

  159. Beverley

    And I also follow you on Facebook!
    Bev again!

  160. Bobbe Simpson

    Thank you for the giveaway.

  161. Love my yoga! 🙂

  162. mrs. short

    ooh, yes please! i follow on twitter.

  163. mrs. short

    and i like you on facebook. 🙂

  164. mrs. short

    aaaand i subscribe via email.

  165. Gayle Erwin

    Yoga in class is my “better” but if I have not been able to make it, yoga at home is the next best thing. It does help me feel better in so many ways.

  166. Gayle Erwin

    I love readding all about Alaska in your blog. I get it in my RSS reader.

  167. Sports Authority is huge. I’d be able to find something. Count me in. And looking forward to your funny comments on your yoga classes.

  168. Of course I follow you and your daughter’s “I Pick Up pennies” on email.

  169. I could use this… trying to get back in to something of a yoga routine.

  170. I also follow you on the (doomed) Google Reader.

  171. Kerry G.

    Have been considering yoga for years. I carry so much tension in my neck and back, I’m sure that yoga would help with that. Maybe $50 in gear would give me the motivation to start. 🙂

  172. I follow you on twitter, too.

  173. Yoga was my path to accepting my body. Now I just need to find a new studio …

  174. Love reading your blog – it’s full of wit, humor, and wisdom. Thanks!

  175. This would be amazing as I’m just beginning to get back to normal after fracturing my ribs!

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