How’d you sleep last night?
For you moms out there, did you sleep like the kids were at Nana’s house for the weekend? (I absolutely love this commercial!)
Well the National Sleep Foundation’s inaugural Sleep Health Index™ discovered that even though most Americans are getting the right amount of sleep, the quality of that sleep was poor.
A mattress company recently created the #stopyawntalking hashtag because we’re getting such lousy sleep. They want you to come in and buy a new mattress so you can stop yawning while talking throughout your day.
When I learned that a good night’s sleep helped with weight loss, I personally didn’t need another reason to pursue quality slumber.
- Sleep helps improve your memory? That’s nice. Now where are my keys?
- It helps spur creativity? So does this mean I’ll be able to draw now?
- Sleep sharpens our attention? Ooooo look! A puppy!
Nope, none of those reasons really sold me. It was the notion of waking up thinner that had me buy a new mattress and lavender scented sachets to put in my pillow case.
A friend even recommended Melatonin, a natural hormone we all produce, that can be used as a sleep aid. The way this hormone works in the body is pretty cool. As daylight fades, we produce more melatonin and we feel less active. It’s non-habit forming and my friend swears by it. I tried it just once and the quality of my sleep was not improved. I was also taking a really awful med at bedtime too. So all the good the melatonin could have done was more than likely snuffed out by the crappy meds I had to take.
So what has worked?
What has me sleeping like a baby? What has me sleeping like I haven’t seen my bed in weeks?
It’s something every new parent quickly learns. When you need sleep or a moment to yourself, new parents learn you wear those little darlings out with extended amounts of vigorous play. Yes, let them run themselves ragged. Exert every ounce of energy those little bodies can produce and leave it ALL on the playground.
Surprisingly this doesn’t just work on toddlers and small children. This also works on adults like you and me.
I’ve found that a good 30-40 cardio workout (strength training too) an hour or so before bed is enough to knock me out for the night and provide the kind of sleep that leaves you feeling rested in the morning. Like maybe you could get through the morning without coffee. Maybe.
So what works for the kids, is very likely to work for you.
Just leave it all on the gym floor or the pavement for a half hour before bed and prepare for that good night’s sleep.