Don’t Sweat the Stress, Sweat it Out

I’ve written a couple of times on the effect of stress on my resting heart rate. Well, after last Friday’s little experience in deadline stress I went to yoga.

Bikram Yoga.

90 minutes of intense exercise in a hot, humid room, and lemme tell you, it was awesome. What a great way to end the workday and transition into an evening with my boys.



Yeah, no…I’m lying.

It really wasn’t awesome. In actual fact, it sucked. I mean, It really, royally SUCKED…big dangly donkey balls, it did suck. One of the worst classes I’ve had in the last 6 months.

Now, I’ve been going to the hot box 3 times a week since May…May 2011. Yeah, I took the summer off, but I’ve been back since September, and I’ve been playing hockey weekly since October. According to my Fitbit I’m in excellent shape…for a man my age.

Aside: why the snarky little “for a man your age” there Fitbit? During these hot Pilates, and hot yoga, torture sessions I regularly work men (and women) half my age into the ground. I’m not in excellent shape “for my age,” I’m in excellent shape. But I digress.

Where was I? Oh, yeah, that Bikram class what sucked hard enough to pull a golf ball through a garden hose.

Why did it suck? I’ve already told you the answer, it was the stress.

My wife and I have been under the stress of a significant change in our lives. A good change, but a change nonetheless, and it was stressful. That cost me a couple of poor nights sleep, which is a stressor in and of itself. And it was followed by Friday’s deadline adventure.

All of which means I got run over by the yoga bus. Which backed up, ran me over again, and did a couple of doughnuts just for good measure.

It did such a good job on me that when I got home my wife took one look and said, “You look wrung out.” That doesn’t normally happen.

And wrung out I was. So much that I fell asleep at 6:45 and almost missed taking the boys to their piano lesson. Then almost fell asleep waiting for them at the lesson.


It doesn’t just elevate your heart rate, it grinds you down and wears you out. What was it I said before? Oh, yeah:

Stress. It sucks the life right out of you. So do something about it.

Thing is, as bad as that yoga class was, as badly as it sucked, it was the something I was doing about my stress levels. And, as bad as it was, the result (after a good night’s sleep) was…I felt better. Lots better.

Try it. You’ll feel better, too.