Mr. Sandman has gone M.I.A.

February 8, 2012

Its Wednesday, right? I think?  Maybe?

Is anyone else having a hard time sleeping lately?  I don’t get it, I’m working out more, getting more done in my day and I still have yet to fall asleep at a decent enough hour to not feel like a zombie gym rat in the morning (scary thought).  Yesterday I was a bumbling mass on the treadmill and for 4 miles just could NOT get my rhythm down.  4 long.stumbly.miles.   I need sleep, ya’ll. Or at least, to sleep better.

So.  I’m trying to figure out just why I’m not sleeping so hot and I came across this article on fitsugar.com that highlighted a few potential culprits.

1.  Too much Caffeine:  Is this even possible?  I kid..I kid…They say you shouldn’t have caffeine 8-9  hours before planning to go to sleep.  Which means I should stop sipping that coffee or tea by noon.  Which makes sense, by lunch time I try to switch over to water or herbal tea for the rest of the day.  But I’ve been known to gulp down 3-4 cups in a morning (Grad school does strange things to people…strange things). So this week, in both an attempt to reset AND sleep better.  I have officially stopped myself at 2 cups of coffee a DAY.  I still will sneak in a cup of black tea every now and again in the morning, but never caffeine in the afternoon.   The other possibility is all of those 1 or 2 a day mini chocolate bars I had indulged in last week, in the afternoon.  Chocolate has enough caffeine to mess with a system – so i’m working on cutting that back.

2. Staying up late and sleeping in on weekends:   We all know its best to keep on a fairly regular time schedule for your internal clock.  While I am guilty of extending my sleeping hours just a tad on the weekends, lets keep in mind that sleeping in for me is 6:30-7:00 AM.  Its rare that I’ll sleep past 7 and am never still in bed after 8.  I figure on days that it does happen, my body needed the rest.  And let’s get real.  I’m a loser and tend to pass out on the couch by 10 pm on Friday nights anyhow 🙂

3. Technology:  Too much stimulation!  Computer screens, phones, TVs oh my!  While I do try for at least 15-30 minutes of mental downtime before bed, lately that down time has been while I’m IN bed.  There’s just so much to do in one night!  A great help with this has been my goal to keep reading books consistently.  While this is still mental stimulation – its at least a way for me to relax a bit mentally before closing my eyes for an 8 hr nap.  I’ve also tried to do some stretching every night, especially just before bed.  Sun salutations have really helped me unwind physically and I always need more reasons to remind myself to stretch!

4. Not enough exercise:  Pass.

5.  Bedroom is too bright or noisy: I will concede that when I go to bed before B, lights and noises will get to me fairly quickly. If I can make out words from the TV, my mind simply cannot shut off from listening and picking out the sentences that are forming.  HOWEVER, sometimes I wish we had a little more white noise.  If I could fall asleep to pouring rain and thunderstorms each night I’d be a happy happy girl.

6.  Drinking too much: Happily, this one isn’t an issue for me.  I am all for enjoying a glass of wine, cocktail or an ice cold beer.  But I try to keep my alcohol drinking to special occasions and weekends only.

7.  Stress:  Hmmmm, not like I have any of THAT in my life.  Last week was an especially stressful week for me, I put a lot of pressure on myself personally and as a result am very rarely satisfied. Definitely a goal for the long term.

 

Looking at some of these, I can definitely see a few trouble spots that are worth working on.  Both from an overall healthy viewpoint and a “PLEASE LET ME SLEEP” call for help.

 

Who’s got some tips for getting back on the sleeping bandwagon?  Any tricks for getting yourself to relax and finally fall asleep??

xo

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