15 Simple Strategies for a Good Night's Sleep
Your goals don’t have to be body composition or athletic-based to see the direct correlation between sleep and performance. Want a job promotion? Need to work on your relationship? Find yourself feeling “down” or lacking motivation? Sleep improves your attention to detail, quality of work, mood, patience, and outlook on, well, everything.
Here are 15 simple tactics you can use to help you get the sleep you need and reach your ultimate goals.
- Banish the blue light.
TV, computer, and phone screens emit a blue light, which directly inhibits melatonin production. It’s the same kind of light that comes from the sun. This means your body doesn’t know that it’s time to go to sleep!
- Update your mattress. Sometimes we get so used to our mattress that we don’t even realize it’s the source of our discomfort. Assess your mattress and see if it’s time for an upgrade.
- Eat carbs at night.
Have you ever eaten a big plate of carbs and felt sleepy afterward? Eating some carbs before bedtime can help you sleep.
- Don’t do drugs.
Caffeine, cigarettes, alcohol, and sugar do the opposite of helping you wind down for a solid night’s sleep. Have your last cup of coffee as far away from bedtime as possible.
- Have a bedtime routine.
Creating a ritual before bed works wonders and tells your body it’s time to sleep. This can include taking a warm bath or shower, reading a book, drinking tea, listening to soothing music or even just dimming the lights to start signaling that it’s bedtime. Read more on creating a bedtime routine in this article.
- Stretch and roll.
Aches, pains, and stiffness can make sleep uncomfortable and cause irritability. Stretching and rolling help reduce these aches and pains and improve your athletic and sleep performance.
- Keep your bedroom cool.
Your body likes to bring its core temperature down during sleep. If the room is too hot, sleep can be difficult. Turn on a fan or set your air conditioner to a cooler temperature before bedtime. You can get a ChiliPad, designed to regulate your mattress's temperature so you stay cool inside the bed! Great for those who share beds with others or get overheated at night.
- Keep a notepad next to your bed.
Write it down if you struggle to fall asleep because you’re already thinking about tomorrow and all the things you need to get done. Keep a notepad handy so you can quickly turn on the lamp, write it down and feel assured that you won’t forget because now it’s written down!
- Exercise often.
Exercise releases endorphins that help you relax and tire you out—what’s not to love? Just going for a walk can improve your likeliness of falling asleep quickly.
- Don’t force it.
Get up if you’re tossing and turning and sleep just isn’t happening. Sit in a chair, read a book or relax elsewhere. It can help your mind settle sooner and get you back in bed and ready for sleep.
- Use light therapy. A Sunrise Alarm Clock wakes you up with soft sounds and natural light. It’s a fantastic way to start the day while allowing you to keep your phone outside of your bedroom! There are also some great phone apps with similar features if you’d rather not add something to your side table - make sure you set your phone to Do Not Disturb.
- Make your room DARK. Cover the windows to ensure changes in light won't wake you up.
- Play relaxing sounds! Switch on the fan, open the window a little or download a nature sounds app or playlist from Spotify or Pandora that plays natural sounds. We love the Rain Rain Sleep Sounds app.
- Get comfortable. It seems obvious, but it goes without saying that comfy pajamas, a soft comforter, a pillow, and a mattress will help you sleep well!
- Don’t over or under-hydrate. Too much or too little water and food before bed can disrupt your sleep. You’ll either need to get up to use the bathroom or wake up thirsty or hungry. Work to get the balance just right.
There you have it, fifteen ways to ensure you're getting the most out of your sleep.
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