Listen to your heart
There’s a good chance your watch displays your heart rate, but have you ever stopped to feel your pulse?
Find your pulse by placing two fingers on the thumb side of your wrist or on the side of your neck just under the jawbone. If you have some time, take a full minute to count how many times you feel a beat.
Over the course of the day, your heart beats about 100,000 times. The system of blood vessels that are attached and branch off from the heart to your entire body are over 60,000 miles long! That is one spectacular system you have in there.
Your heart has two sides. One side takes the blood from the body back to the heart to get oxygen from the lungs. The other side takes that oxygen-rich blood back out to the body. This system supplies the oxygen needed to every cell for proper function.
If you were to do some jumping jacks or dance around a bit, you would notice your pulse becomes faster as your heart beats faster. This movement, or any exercise, increases your body’s need for oxygen and other nutrients. Instantaneously, the brain sent a signal to your heart to beat faster to speed up the flow of blood around the body to be able move.
In a very relaxed state, you would notice your heart rate slows down. Deep breathing gives the heart a little massage and helps to get oxygen into the body while exhaling carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide is a waste product of all our hard working cells. While taking slow deep breaths, you may notice heart rate changes when you inhale compared to when you exhale.
Belly breathing is wonderful for several reasons, but be good to your heart today and take 10 deep breaths while sitting or lying down today. Take your pulse before and after to see the effect deep breathing has on your heart rate. Slow down, listen to your heart, and extend gratitude to this vital organ inside your marvelous body!