Here are some reasons you may be finding it hard to sleep and what you can do about it!
So maybe you are training for gains, or to lose some body fat, or maybe you just want to get ‘fitter’.
Regardless of your goals, one of the first things to look at is how you are sleeping.
Our bodies NEED sleep!
Are you getting enough?
Is it consistent?
Is it uninterrupted?
If you answered NO, then it’s time to figure out why and do something about it.
Inactivity – Sedentary job and spending most the evening on the sofa? Your body needs to expend energy!
Get active, this could be the gym, but it could also be going outside for a 20 minute walk at lunch or simply going up the stairs at home a couple times every hour during your working day
Coffee, Tea, High Caffeine Drinks – Are you having 2, 3 or even more coffees in a day? Or having an energy drink to push through that afternoon hump? The effects of caffeine can last for 6+ hours!
Remove the afternoon caffeine or slowly cut back on it, switch for decaffeinated herbal teas, or simply have some water (hydration is also very important)
Alcohol – A glass of wine with dinner or going out on a complete bender, either can impact your sleep. Our body needs to work to metabolize all the toxins and the potential for deep sleep is interrupted. So you may fall asleep quicker with alcohol, but your quality of sleep will not be where it needs to be and you will wake up feeling tired
Remove or reduce alcohol intake, and if you enjoy a beer or glass of wine with dinner, try and make sure you leave at least 2-3 hours between your last sip and bed time
Stress – Racing thoughts and an overactive mind just before bed?
Think about winding down before bed, introduce a journaling practice where you can get all your thoughts on paper or perhaps try meditation. Headspace or Waking Up are both great apps for Guided meditation if this is something you would like to try.
Late Night Snacking – Eating late dinners or simply reaching for the biscuits and toast just before bed? This causes our bodies to focus on digestion rather than sleep and all of it’s restorative properties.
Be mindful of time and routine, try not to eat anything within two hours of your typical sleep time. This will allow are body time to digest
Our surroundings – Are you sleep in a warm room? Or a bright room? Or maybe just a little bit of light sneaks in…. Get it sorted.
Make sure your room is a couple degrees cooler than what you are used to, we sleep better in cool environments. Then make sure it is dark, try black out blinds for the best result, but at least have all the lights out and the curtains drawn… think like a bear and aim for a cool dark cave at night.
Screen Time! Are you scrolling just before bed? This is the worst! We need time to decompress and also time away from all that light.
An hour or two before bedtime make sure you part ways with your electronics. Let yourself decompress with a book or some meditation as noted earlier and trust me, you will sleep better for it.
Inconsistency… from night owl to early bird and back again? How is your body clock supposed to know what’s going on.
Try and establish a routine! CONSISTENCY DRIVES RESULTS (with sleep and everything else)… so pick a bedtime and a wake-up time that works for you and stick to it for a bit… before you know it, this will be second nature and you will be sleeping like a baby