Which brings us to Chicago Sweatlodge, where the last torturous days of winter face a withering onslaught of 240-degree saunas, killer rubdowns and lots of Ukrainian beer.
When you enter, you'll be offered a locker key, flip-flops, and an assortment of fluffy towels and wraparounds to preserve your modesty (so, you know, feel free to disregard), and then ushered into a bright, spotless dining hall. Burly Eastern Europeans will look up from their chebureki (beef and pork dumplings), ukha (slow-boiled white fish) and that little-known Minsk specialty, jalapeño poppers, before promptly going back to ignoring you.
Mosey up to the counter, order a Gatorade—or the Russian version of Gatorade (pronounced vod-ka)—before heading to the adjacent sauna area. You'll find a wet Turkish sauna near a searing-hot dry Russian sauna, outfitted with imposing stone furnaces that look like they were quarried from Mount Doom. In the center of the two, an ice-cold plunging pool waits to restore your equilibrium.
After you're done sweating/icing, find one of the black leather recliners or schedule a massage with a brawny Russian-trained masseur who'll knead, rub and otherwise karate chop the tension from your aching muscles in a peaceful back therapy room.
Your stress deserves a little Eastern Promises-style pummeling.