Archive for March, 2014

Being healthier and fitter seems to always be on our to-do list.  Sometimes knowing where to start can be a bit overwhelming.

I say: start with sleep.

It wasn’t until after I had my son and experienced serious sleep deprivation that I became very aware of the effect not enough sleep can have on your life.

Eight hours or more each night is a basic necessity to be healthy.

Now this can be a challenge when you have a lot on your plate, it is for me, but it is possible and should be a top priority.

Just follow these simple steps:

step one
Review: How much sleep are you getting most nights.

step two
Do you find yourself with these feelings during your day?

  • impatience
  • fatigue
  • grumpiness
  • lack of drive
  • lethargy
  • over-eating
  • caffeine/sugar addiction

If you do, I would say this is a good indicator that you’re not getting enough sleep.

Lack of sleep can also lead to depression.

it’s very simple
Go to bed at least eight and half hours or more before you have to get up. This will give you half an hour to settle in (and read if you want to), and then drift off for a full eight hours. I know this seems incredibly basic (and it is) but sometimes we are so busy that we don’t even notice that we’re not even giving ourselves enough time to get a good night’s sleep. Also consider: wouldn’t it be nice to wake up naturally in your own time when you’ve had enough sleep instead of with an alarm clock?

When you’re away on holiday, how many hours do you sleep per night when you don’t have to up at certain time?  This is the amount of sleep your body naturally needs.  Strive to sleep this many hours every night.

have trouble falling asleep?

  • cut down on caffeine, especially after 12pm, or better yet cut caffeine out completely
  • don’t eat close to bed time (give yourself at least a few hours), especially sugar, as your body will still be busy digesting (& will store it all as fat since you won’t be burning any of it off since you’re going to bed)
  • also eating before bed will probably cause you to have to get up in the night to go the washroom
  • are you getting any exercise during the day? all that pent up energy needs to get out, good for the body and the soul.
  • perhaps there’s a lot on your mind, consider talking to a friend or a counselor – flush it out!
  • try naturopathic products for sleep, in tea form or pill form
  • if you think, “I can’t fall asleep” or “I can’t sleep eight hours”, then you won’t be able to, you have to think, “I can!”

but I don’t have enough time to sleep 8 hours a night!

If this was your first thought then consider how much more efficient and productive you will be when you’re getting the proper sleep.  Also, we are not as “on the ball” when we haven’t had enough sleep.

afternoon pick me ups
Another indicator that you’re not getting enough sleep is feeling tired in the afternoon. (Could also be that you’re dehydrated, check: have you had any water today? or maybe you forgot to have lunch?)

LISTEN to your body, it’s trying to tell you something!

Instead of ignoring it and grabbing a cup of coffee or a treat to give you energy, consider doing this instead:

– drink a big glass of water

– go outside and stretch your legs, take in some deep breathes of fresh air

– take a quiet break, sit down or lie down if you can – try doing nothing to recharge

– if you’re able, take a power nap – always does wonders, even just 10 minutes, careful not to nap too long later in the afternoon or you’ll have trouble falling a sleep that night.

– learn to meditate and take a meditation break.

Try this for two weeks and you will be amazed, you will feel like a new person!

Happy Sleeping!

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