Okay Y’all. I have a confession: I LOVE sleep. That’s not quite a secret, I’ll admit, but true nonetheless. Nothing makes me feel better than a great night’s sleep! Unfortunately there are nights where I’ve missed out on some Zzz’s, and you know, life happens… but the next day ultimately ends up being carb-filled, cranky, and overall less pleasant. Thankfully I’ve tried to change the habits of my old ways (Scandal marathon & red wine, anyone?) and have settled into a better sleep routine. I’ve never been happier.
Here’s how you can too.
I know- ugh- you hear every day that exercise will solve all your problems right? Well it might actually improve your sleep quality. A: running and grooving to Bey totally releases feelings of stress and invites in all those feel good endorphin’s (and when you feel good, you sleep good). B: Studies have shown regular exercise helps you fall into a deeper sleep longer aka your body gets the most out of it’s snooze time. As far as when to work out, exercisers who hit the gym in the AM were most consistent and most likely to stick to their workout, and those who workout in the afternoon saw the most sleep benefits, just avoid getting your sweat on too late as it’s possible this can disrupt your sleep cycle.
Monitor your light.
Another trick to getting your body ready for bed time is to turn off all electronics. You may have heard that electronics emit blue light waves (the kind that come from your television, smart phone, tablet, ect). These waves disrupt your body’s ability to produce the sleep hormone melatonin, which is bad news because this can throw off your entire internal clock and keep you from falling asleep no matter how tired your body is. Resist the urge to check your phone by charging it somewhere out of reach. If you have especially low will power and need to check your texts/instagram/snapchat (guilty) you may need to invest in an alarm clock and keep your phone out of the bedroom. Instead of binge watching Netflix/DVR invest in a good book… the hard cover kind (sorry Kindle). Your sleep will thank you.
Eat more seafood.
This one’s easy assuming you enjoy salmon. New studies have found that the Omega-3’s found in oily fish like tuna, mackerel, and salmon can improve sleep quality by enhancing the production of serotonin (a neurotransmitter that helps regulate sleep). Not really a fish lover? Pop an omega 3 capsule twice a day, easy!
Have a girls day/night
You know that feeling of genuine happiness after brunch, shopping, really any time with your closest friends? It actually helps you sleep better at night. Knowing you have a great support system helps reduce stress which helps improve your sleep later on. Getting all your thoughts out about know-it-all Sarah from work also doesn’t hurt. Moral of the story: being able to talk, and knowing they’ll listen, means a happy night’s snooze.
Choose your snacks wisely
It’s obvious that you shouldn’t drink a cup of coffee before bed. What’s not as obvious: you should also avoid, wine (you might feel drowsy now but a few hours into sleep and you’re more likely to wake), green and black teas, foods high in sugar and fat, and dark chocolate (caffeine). Instead chose tart cherries or cherry juice, milk, bananas, lean turkey, sweet potato, and chamomile or lavender teas.
That’s all for now loves,