One of the things I have been talking with clients about recently is making sure they are getting enough sleep, and good quality sleep.
But what do I mean by getting better sleep? What is enough sleep and what do I mean by good quality sleep?
For everyone sleep is absolutely vital. It is the time we recover and rejuvenate. If you are on any health, fitness, or weight loss journey right now, then if you are not getting enough sleep, it could be hampering your results.
You don’t get the health benefits in the gym, you get them when you recover, when you are sleeping.
Good quality sleep, better sleep, is the deep sleep, this is the time that the body goes into all out recovery mode. The more deep sleep you get, the more recovering your body does.
I started writing this post, and it began to turn into a huge post, so I decided to break it down into smaller parts, and give you just 1 or 2 things to work on each week.
How Your Phone Is Stopping You From Getting The Sleep You Need?
This comes after chatting with several clients who are having sleep issues. It is not uncommon, lots of people are getting only a few hours sleep, and living off caffeine during the day. But your phone… how can this be stopping you from sleeping?
One client told me last night that there could be 6 devices on his bedside table when he is sleeping, you know who you are. Why is this bad? Well aside from the potential adverse effects of electromagnetic fields, the phone being next to you will disrupt your sleep… how?
Getting to sleep:
You have been watching TV, or playing a computer game, when you look at the clock and think, I should really go to bed now its getting late. The problem is your brain is still active after watching that TV show.
The last thing you do before you go to bed is check your phone, go through your emails, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and then back through them all again just in case something changed in the last 30 seconds….. it didn’t. This sets your mind whirring, you see an email or a post you absolutely must respond to, and your brain fires up and starts thinking of what to say. You have just told your brain that it’s not time to go to sleep yet.
The other major thing that happens is the light that comes from the phone hits your eyes and skin and the body reacts to that by thinking its day time and it can’t possibly be time for sleep. This doesn’t just go for your phone light. Any light in the room will have this effect. Like I said, if you are watching TV immediately before bed, the light from the TV will have the same effect.
You get a Facebook notification in the middle of the night, your phone, and iPad both “ding” and suddenly you are awake. Well you absolutely must check it it could be something super important…. right? So you open up your phone, release light into your eyes, and get the brain whirring again. You may get back to sleep; but it won’t be good sleep.
“But my phone is on silent, it never wakes me up”
OK fair enough, but if you wake up in the middle of the night to go to the toilet and the phone is by your bed, do you just quickly tap the screen, just to check if there is anything on your phone? I know you do.
Alright so I have given some examples and believe me there are loads more; this is just a few to get you thinking. Now what can we do to make sure you get sound sleep?
Tips For Better Sleep
1. Remove all electronic devices, phones, iPads, tablets from the bedroom.
Put them on charge in another room. I promise you that there is nothing exciting that you will miss out on at 3am, that you can’t check on the next morning.
2. Have a bedtime routine
We do this for kids, because we know that if they have a routine, they will sleep better and be less grumpy in the morning. So why don’t we do it for ourselves? You will often hear “no TV before bed” when parents are talking to kids, and yet, we are sat there watching TV right before bed… talk about double standards.
A. So switch off all electronic devices, such as the TV, phones, tablets etc, 1 hour before you want to go to bed
B. Start getting yourself ready for bed
C. Read a book. Although this may get the brain whirring it does not give off any light.
D. Perhaps have a bath, to help you relax.
F. Dim the lights – remember the more light the more the body thinks its day time.
“But I use my phone as my alarm, I can’t remove it from the room”
There is a SUPER simple solution here…. can you guess it before I say it?……….5……….4………..3……….2………1….
Use an alarm clock!
I knew that would blow your mind haha!
Any basic alarm clock will do, however I do really like the Lumie alarm clocks. Gradually dimming the light before you got to sleep, and gradually waking you up in the morning by gently raising the light… genius! Check out the Lumie Bodyclockhere.
So if you want better sleep, then you have 2 things to work on this week..
1. Remove all electronic devices
2. Get yourself a bedtime routine
Now these won’t necessarily cause an overnight miracle and suddenly you get the best sleep of your life. Don’t get me wrong, those two tips alone could make the world of difference, however; the important thing is that you do it consistently, not just once. Make it habit. The real benefits will be in the long term.
So for the next 21 days, remove the devices, and have a routine and you will be sleeping better.
I can’t wait to share next weeks part of this post!!
All the best
If you want more health and fitness advice, and you would like to make sure you achieve your goals. Then schedule a FREE consultation with us, just click here, or call us on 01372 231002. We look forward to helping you achieve your goals.