Sleep is a good thing. Lack of sleep, is not.
One of the most common reasons I’m given by people who miss boot-camp on any given day is that they have been having sleep difficulty. Sure, I know that they could be feeding me a line, but hey, I’m an optimist 🙂
I suffer from sleep problems off and on. Sometimes I wake up after a few hours and am up until 2:00am before being able to fall back asleep. Or I can’t fall asleep until after midnight. Sometimes I wake up at 3:00am and my brain goes into hyperdrive and I’m up. I try to take naps if I can in the afternoon to play catch up. And then there’s coffee. Always coffee. I put a hard stop on coffee after 4:30pm so it’s not a caffeine-thing. In case you were wondering.
While I’m not a big fan of sleep aids I have taken slow-release Melatonin which has worked and also a homeopathic remedy, but I have to remember to take it early. I won’t take anything after 9:00pm because I worry that when the alarm goes off at 4:00am it will feel like a truck hit me. Those boot-camp classes are hard to teach with sleep meds coursing through your veins.
I think I’ve shared that I often do my meditating at night. To help me unwind enough to sleep I look for those that focus on relaxation, calming or has “melting” in the description. I lay down, open the podcast and off I go. Sometimes I doze off and when it’s over I either turn it off and fall asleep or sometimes the episodes keep rolling. But even if I wake up to turn off the podcast, I’m able to use the techniques to quickly fall back asleep. If I wake up at any time during the night, I use the visualization to get back to sleep. My favorite guided meditation podcast is Meditation Minis by Chel Hamilton. She’s on iTunes and her stuff is free.
Easy yoga is also a good way to relax and prepare for slumber. My gal Adriene, over at Yoga with Adriene has short practices that can help you get into sleepy-mode. Check her out at www.yogawithadriene.com. While you’re there, look into her 30 day TRUE series that she’s offering. I’m on Day 10 and am loving it.
Recently I’ve also found this really nifty podcast called Sleep with Silk. There are a variety of podcasts they offer to help you sleep and I choose the Soothing Voices podcasts. Basically it’s people with very soothing and comforting voices reading a story, providing a guided sleep meditation (my fav is ‘Take a Nap’) or even chanting. The only tricky part is figuring out the earbuds while I’m laying down but I have some DIY idea I’m going to try that include a flat pair of earbuds and an old Lululemon headband. You can also find them on iTunes. And their shorter versions are free.
I know that I’m not alone in this so share your tips, tricks and strategies. And please, try and get some zzzz’s.
Now go run!