My husband Stephen was working with a personal trainer Sam and towards the end of his workout Stephen found himself on the treadmill. As he built up his pace, Sam the trainer, observing the heart monitor said, “We need to get your heart rate down.” My husband’s response was, “Ok, no problem.”
Now I am guessing what happened next isn’t something Sam sees every day. Within seconds, as they both watched the heart rate monitor, Stephen’s heart rate began to drop. And not just by a few points, but somewhat significantly.
Sam was in disbelief and quickly asked, “How did you do that?” “Easy,” Stephen said, “I used my breath as my wife taught me.”
I often say that the breath is the most amazing gift we could have. Without it well basically, we wouldn’t be alive. But aside from that, it is something that we both can control or let happen naturally.
When we choose to observe our breath without control, a form of meditation, we can learn a lot in that moment. And I say the moment, because the breath is constantly changing. The breath may choose to stay focused in one area of our body, or it may move to many. It may be quick or slow, deep or shallow, easy or hindered.
The flip side is when we choose to control our breath. We may choose to lengthen the inhale and/or the exhale; we may focus the breath to a certain part of the body; and yes, we may use it to slow down our heart rate.
Isn’t that truly amazing?!!?!
So when I have individuals tell me they don’t have the time to relax I guide them to discover the power of the breath. Whether you focus on just one breath to come in and out of the body, or spend a minute or two to focus on the breath, the positive impact it can have on your mind and body is immediate.
As far as Sam the trainer goes, the next time I saw him he made me hop on the treadmill and show him my “superpowers” of slowing down my heartrate with my breath. After seeing it happen, just as Stephen had done it, he asked me to show him how he too could lower his heartrate, and I did. He now can share his superpower with others with the magic of his breath.
Did you know you have this superpower? Give it a try!!
If you want to learn more about observing the breath and other ways to relax, click here and find the treasures!