Set a regular bedtime – This is a tough one for many of us to actually achieve. When you have a varying schedule like I do, it’s hard to go to sleep at the same time each night. However difficult it may be, it is so important to try to keep to a regular bedtime each day INCLUDING weekends.
Wake up at the same time daily – This is similar to going to bed at the same time each night. Even if your daily schedule varies, it’s a good habit to wake up daily at the same time. This is something I can be totally guilty of as a Pilates instructor. My schedule is so different each day, but I try to stick to a schedule as much as I can even when I don’t have to be up so early.
Take naps 🙂 – It’s OKAY to take naps to get better sleep. A nap should be only between 20-30 minutes long. Anything longer will lead to lethargic feelings the rest of the afternoon. If you have a night where you have trouble falling to sleep, it’s okay to take a nap later that afternoon to give you a little boost in energy. Even the Sleep Foundation says so!
Create a nightly routine
Make sure your bed is comfortable – You really can’t put a price on a good nights sleep. If your bed is uncomfortable and you can’t afford a new mattress, I highly suggest getting a thick memory foam topper. If you are a side sleeper like myself, you will appreciate a soft bed and maybe a pillow to hug. 😉
Write out last minute to-do’s – This may seem counter productive but it works well for me. When I am trying to go to bed and I feel like I have so much to get done, I write it all out on a to-do list to look at and prioritize the next day. This helps me clear my mind of any clutter and get a restful night sleep.
Do something for yourself that helps you unwind – Taking a quick shower at night helps me get better sleep. For some it could be reading or taking a bath. Maybe having a cup of tea. Whatever works for you, make it a habit of trying to do it each night for 30 minutes before bed. You should try to limit exposure to TV or your cell phone in the 30 minutes before bed to help your brain go into sleep mode.
Exercise for better sleep
Do something active at least 30 minutes a day – Try to sweat it out at least 30 minutes a day for better sleep. This time can even be broken up into 10 or 15 minute segments if you can’t get in 30 minutes all together. I love the website Pilates Anytime because for a low monthly rate, they give you access to over 1,000 mat Pilates workouts that you can do from home. They also vary in length, and they have an app so you can workout on the go! Check them out!
Hopefully these tips will help you achieve a better nights sleep tonight! Remember, consistency with sleep and wake times is a big factor, and if you get less than your optimal amount of sleep its OKAY to take a nap! Happy napping everyone!