As a kid and pretty much through college I could sleep though just about anything. As an eight year old I slept through multiple fire trucks using the fire hydrant in front of the house. If that’s not the definition of sleeping soundly I don’t know what is. As I’ve aged that ability dwindled, I still sleep well but I’ve not been consistent with sleep habits.
When a 2 Weeks to Better Sleep challenge popped up on my FitBit App I was game to attempt it. I was still sleeping well, I was just not consistent with my sleeping habits and there were days that I definitely dragged. I also more or less work a schedule that is 11:30-8:30 most days, which means I try to get most things done early in the morning. Four months in to being on top of my sleep habits I’ve discovered a few things.
- My biggest takeaway was cutting caffeine and sugar after 3 pm. That means no Diet Soda, no chocolate, and very little fruit. Pre-pandemic I had a daily Starbucks habit, part of stopping that means I rarely do coffee after breakfast.
- Since I eat a later dinner I tend to stick with only a protein and a veggie. In general I do better on a lower carb diet, so it’s not a big deal for me. There are plenty of nights I just have a couple of slices of turkey and some pickles.
- I allow myself to decompress by lying across a Bosu Ball and playing meditative music for 10 minutes most nights. It allows me to be stretched out and a lot less tense getting into bed.
- By 10:30 my teeth are brushed, I’ve applied either Lavender or Rosemary oil to my pressure points, and my bedroom is at about 68 degrees.
- I’m still working on the no TV before bed thing. Every time I try it I tend to fail, I can’t fall asleep to silence. I do use a sleep timer and it’s an episode of Friends or the BigBang Theory that I’ve seen way too many times on in the background.
I’ve rarely needed to turn off a morning alarm since I started being consistent with habits. Most mornings my body wakes itself up between 6:15 and 7 am. The sleep changes are still a work in progress, but being able to have a morning conversation uncaffeinated is a major victory.