Getting a good night’s sleep is essential for keeping us healthy both physically and mentally. Having good quality sleep and sleeping habits can boost our quality life and improve our performance in the gym.
That’s because sleep plays a significant role in healing and repairing your body, including your heart and blood vessels. According to The Sleep Council it also helps us maintain a healthy weight, good balance of hormones and keeps our brain working properly.
Sleep lets us learn, remember, solve problems, make decisions, safeguards us against stress and mood swings and most importantly - heals our muscles.
But despite the fact we all sleep, not many of us do it well. While most adults need six to nine hours, many of us struggle to nod off, or find ourselves waking up, so here’s some of our tips for helping you get off into the land of nod:
Keep regular sleeping hours. By going to bed and getting up at the same time, you’ll be programming your brain and internal body clock to get used to a set routine. Be strict - even if you have a bad night’s sleep, it’s worth trying to stick to the same times.
We also recommend adding in wind down time to your routine. Whether it’s a bath (we recommend using some lavender oil in it), some soft music or light reading, winding down before bed and limiting technology use can make the world of difference.
We’re here to help with this and we think you’ll be able to manage it! Working out on a regular basis can help relieve some of the tension you build up over the day. But, don’t work out too close to bed time or it might keep you awake.
Cut down on caffeine in coffee, tea, energy drinks or fizzy drinks in the evening. Caffeine interferes with the falling asleep process and prevents deep sleep - try a warm, milky drink or herbal tea instead.
If you lie in bed at night worrying about everything you have to do, why not try setting aside time before bed to make plans for the next day. Your bed should be for sleeping in, so try to avoid doing life admin while in there!
Do not over indulge at night times. Too much food or alcohol especially late at night can interrupt your sleep pattern. While alcohol may help you sleep at first, it will disrupt you later on… so put away the midnight snack and don’t be tempted by that cheeky night cap.
And finally, if you can’t sleep, get up…
According to the NHS, if you can’t sleep the best thing to do is to get up and do something relaxing until you feel sleepy again instead of lying there worrying about it.
But remember, if you’re really struggling to sleep make sure you go and see your GP. They will be able to help.
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