Jan 26, 2011

Deep Breathing and Ulcers

When I first moved back to Knoxville, I took the bar, dealt with a major family upheaval/shift/crisis, planned a wedding, renovated a bachelor pad condo, and practiced my first year of law. 

And picked up an ulcer along the way, unsurprisingly.

I feel like right now I am about to pick up another one.

This time instead of several major life events, it's a multitude of little things- work, volunteer obligations, and social stuff.

Now, I've never been one to let party planning stress me out, but being out of town every weekend from here til June can get a sister a bit tense.

As part of my ulcer fix, I was told to manage my stress.  Hmmpphh.  Easy to say.  Tres difficult to do.
Exercise helps- and I loved leaving work before six to catch a kick-boxing class- "Doctor's orders!"

Tra la.

Now, yoga is supposed to do wonders to tame the never-ending chant of  "need to do _____" that is on repeat in my brain.  However, I need to bounce! Holding myself upside down while being told to relax, is the least cathartic thing I can do.  Don't misunderstand me, I like yoga, (especially when it's over) but I don't find it relaxing.  Kicking a punching bag, or pelvic thrusting in Jazzercise on the other hand. . .

So, I am going to stop freaking out and hiding my head in the sand.  I am going to tackle to my to-do list, and work through it slowly and surely. 

And Zumba*. Or something.  It is better to hit punching bags than other people right?

*Have y'all done this?  Is the music annoying?  I have no rhythm- is it possible for me to participate?

Any tips for me? 


  1. I love Zumba. The music is usually upbeat which makes you work harder. However, you feel like a fool. You need to accept that early and you can move on. If you sit there relaxing you look like a fool and don't embrace it, you will just stress more.

  2. OMG Zumba is the best. In my classes they played a lot of pop music, so it was fun to hear the songs on the radio and dance right along! Everyone looks like an idiot except the instructor. Most folks are more worried about what they're doing than how people around them look. It's a TON of fun.

  3. OMG, girl, I totally understand!! I travel a ton for work and it totally stresses me out. Ugh. Personally, I think there is nothing better than taking out some steam on a punching bag.

    I've never done zumba, but, I know those that really love it.

  4. Zumba is amazing. I dance like no one is watching in public anyway, so I wasn't the least bit embarrassed. It'd def a great workout! I highly recommend.

  5. Zumba is fun but I will ONLY go with a friend.
    I feel like an absolutely goof the entire time, and it's better if you have someone with laugh with you, (and I seriously NEVER feel this way - I have no shame)(also I am not a p.diddy backup dancer but I'm not an awkward white girl either).
    Also the instructor helps - there is a fabulous gay man at my gym that teaches one of the Zumba classes and he is hysterical and amazing... the woman that teaches? Meh.

    I'm also with you on the yoga thing - I'd much rather sweat out my stress in spin class. All the quiet "relaxing" during yoga just gives me more time to think about what I'm stressing over!

    As for the general stress - I totally know what you mean. Being out of town, even for FUN stuff, really stresses me out. Wish I had better advice - just know you're not alone!

  6. I do Zumba pretty regularly, and I agree wholeheartedly with katmcd. I always tell people who have never done Zumba before that it absolutely requires "getting over oneself." Which, to be honest, was really difficult for me. I'm a little vain. I like to look good. Not like a spastic little freakazoid with bad hair. BUT nevertheless, after I got over myself, I loved Zumba. I will also echo Legally Fabulous' advice to go with a buddy. I've been going for 6 months and still wouldn't go alone.

  7. oh also - I seriously love this picture of you.
    It's exactly how I picture hanging out with you in real life to be. :)

  8. Zumba is great but totally go into it knowing you'll look very foolish but so will everyone else! It is the best if you can laugh at yourself!

    Does Knoxville have Bikram hot yoga? It is much more intense than regular yoga (which i loathe) and helped me loose weight big time! Sadly we don't have it here in Oxford, but you should definitely give it a try if y'all have it in Knoxville!

  9. I love zumba! at first i was really nervous about doing it because I am not very cordinated. But it's great. The first few weeks you look and feel a little stupid but you get used to it quickly and the music is really fun. Our class is more hip hop then latin but I've also taken ones that are more latin both are fun just different.

  10. I've never done Zumba but I'm a Jazzercizer girl-love it! Thanks so much for all those soup recipes. I ordered her book tonight. Hang in there!

  11. I've been feeling super over-whelmed lately too - like on the verge of a panic attack. no joke! I know I do it to myself with work, working out, cooking, and then all of the traveling and back to back weddings, showers, parties - you name it. I hate to miss things though, always have a good time and love to support my friends. But sometimes something has to give. For instance, I plan to skip everything this weekend to do nothing - just stay home and finish getting this house in shape and organized! As far as Zumba - you'll be fine! The music is fun and upbeat and the dances are easy to pick up!

  12. Sorry you are feeling so stressed. Maybe there are some things on your plate that you can get out of or scale back?? The thought of having every weekend booked til June would make my hair fall out!!

  13. Zumba is really fun and the music is awesome! Yes you do feel like a fool, but really I was so busy trying to follow the instructor I wasn't watching anyone else and I doubt anyone was watching me.

    I did moves I've only seen on TV!

  14. The Zumba classes I've been too aren't anything like those informercials that play 24/7. They've usually played Top 40 radio, and I find myself smiling even when I'm working so hard that I'm sweating buckets. (I mean, "glistening" buckets.)

    Throw in an occasional Power Yoga, too. It's faster-paced, with a little bit more of a cardio element. Think less "om", more "ow, I'm really sore the next day".

  15. I looooove my Zumba classes at my YMCA. I was super intimidated the first time I went, mostly because I thought I was going to be "that" white girl in the class. The one with no rhythm and who looks ridiculous with all these beautiful people who can really shake it. But then I got there and the class was a giant mix of people. Many who were my age, but many old people, some kids, men, and women. As soon as I saw the 70 year old woman in there, I knew I'd be okay :)

    It is such a fun class. The hour of dancing goes by so fast and you leave really feeling like you had a great workout even though you laughed and smiled the whole time. Give it a try!

  16. ive been super overwhelmed too and im on docs orders to de-stess not due to ulcers, but high bp & anxiety. (im much to young and healthy for this!)

    so off to the gym i go to de-anxiety every morning before work. getting out of bed is a bitch, but once i'm there i feel great! good luck!


I love to hear from y'all, so drop me a line!