I did pilates last night and it totally kicked my ass. I am constantly amazed by the effect - both mental and physical - that stress and a lack of sleep have on me. During my last pilates class, I performed at a very advanced level and the trainer consistently pushed me just a little bit harder. It was incredible, and I was very satisfied with my progress. From my performance in class yesterday, however, you'd think I'd never done pilates in my life. I could barely hold my legs up, and they shook uncontrollably the entire time due to one measly little stretch I did during warm-up.
This is not the first time I've observed my body totally unable to function physically on the level I know I'm capable of due to being tired and stressed. I always knew stress affected me, but now I can quantify exactly how much by comparing my pilates performance.
It's really humbling, and one can only imagine what stress does to other parts of the body.
Still, there's nothing quite like exercise - even if I shake and feel like an absolute beginner - to make me relax and forget about everything that is on my mind.