Jess, an ex-Aberdeen midfielder and now a youth team coach with Nottingham Forest, said he became unwell as he prepared to go to the gym.
He told how he sought medical help after discovering he was unable to pick up one of his socks.
His speech also became slurred, he said, and he noticed a slight droop on the left side of his mouth.
Doctors in Nottingham later found that due to a hereditary condition he had high blood cholesterol levels, but said he was expected to make a full recovery from his stroke.
Jess told Aberdeen's Evening Express newspaper: "It was very scary at the time, but I'm grateful my stroke was at the lower end of the scale as far as severity goes.
"I'm feeling fine now and expect to be back at work full time by the end
of the month.
"I know a lot of people who have suffered strokes aren't so lucky."
He said he was surprised to have high blood cholesterol as he regularly exercised, did not smoke and ate and drank sensibly.
But he added he was determined not to let the experience stand in the way of his ambitions as a coach.
Jess made 18 appearances for his country, scoring twice.
He made his debut for Aberdeen aged 17 and - aside from one unsuccessful
season spent in the English Premier League with Coventry - remained at the club for over a decade.
He retired from playing in 2007 while he was at Northampton.
A Forest spokesman said: "Eoin is taking a break from the game but everyone at the club wishes him a speedy recovery and looks forward to welcoming him back to the City Ground very soon."