BoxFit’s Ultimate Guide To Supercharging Your Sleep

Yawning your way through your workday? Wondering to yourself, “why can’t I sleep?” Ready to supercharge your sleep?

According to the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, roughly 30% of us here in India sleep fewer than 6 hours a night. For the record, sleep experts say we should aim for somewhere between 7 and 9 hours.

Welcome to our insomnia-crazed culture.
Short-changing ourselves on sleep can have big-time negative effects on health.
Weight-gain, a stressed immune system, inability to focus and reduced memory are just a few of the short-term effects. Long term health effects from sleep deprivation include high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes – to name just a few. If you’re someone who could stand to spend a few more hours in bed each night, it’s time to make sleep a priority.

Check out this list of 17 tips to supercharge your sleep and start sleeping like a baby tonight…

Photo by Tara Raye on Unsplash 


1. STAY AWAY FROM CAFFEINE, ALCOHOL, AND OTHER DRUGS

Caffeine, alcohol, and nicotine can drastically affect the quality of your sleep. (Not to mention they can also increase anxiety and stress. Try to avoid anything containing caffeine for at least 4-6 hours before bed. Caffeine is found in coffee, tea, fizzy drinks, chocolate, some pain relievers, and even drinks like kombucha. Check your labels to be sure.

While at first alcohol might make you feel tired, a few hours later you could experience a rebound effect, leaving you tossing and turning at night. Try not to drink for at least 4 hours before you go to bed.

You know all about the health hazards of smoking, but did you know that nicotine is a stimulant? It can rev you up, making it hard to go to sleep.

2. AVOID EATING BEFORE BED

Try to finish your last meal of the day several hours before bedtime, and steer clear of foods that cause you indigestion. If you get hungry at night, snack on lighter foods that you know won’t disturb your sleep. Since we all have different digestive triggers, this list of foods will be individual to you.

3. DRINK (WATER) IN MODERATION

Try not to down a huge glass of water shortly before bed, because chances are you’ll have to get up at least once in the night to go to the bathroom.

4. WORK OUT EARLIER IN THE DAY

While regular exercise will help you sleep better, working out too close to bedtime can make it harder to fall asleep. That’s because your body secretes the stress hormone cortisol to help power you through your workout. Whenever possible, try to finish up your workout at least three hours before bed.


5. SET A REGULAR BEDTIME

This helps set your body’s internal clock to have normal waking/sleeping times. Do your best to stick with this bedtime every night (even weekends). This will keep you on track during the week and avoid that overtired Monday morning feeling!

6. CREATE A NIGHTTIME ROUTINE

Our bodies love to get on a schedule. Creating a routine that you follow every night will help set up cues that it’s time to go to bed, signaling your body that it’s time to wind down.

Read, take a relaxing warm (not too hot or cold) shower or bath, meditate / pray, and enjoy relaxing time with your family – and avoid anything that makes you stressed!

7. AVOID SCREEN TIME

Photo by Hanny Naibaho on Unsplash 

Screens (phone, TV, tablet, computer) emit blue light, which can delay the release of melatonin, your body’s sleep-inducing hormone. Try not to spend much time with your eyes focused on them before bedtime. If screen time is a must, you can download a blue-light-blocking app or use glasses that block blue light.

8. GOT TO BED WHEN YOU’RE TIRED

Forcing yourself to sleep before you feel physically tired can lead to frustration and stress, which makes it even harder to fall asleep.

If you’re still feeling wide awake after being in bed for 20 minutes, get up and do something restful (like read) until you’re asleep.

9. SET THE STAGE

Make sure your bedroom is inviting: it should be cool (between 15 and 19 degrees Centigrade), dark, and quiet. Some people find that white noise – either a fan, sound machine, or phone app – helps them sleep.

Eliminate anything that could be stressful or wake you up. If your pet keeps you up at night, consider having them sleep in another room. It also can help to clear your bedroom of clutter.

Is your mattress comfortable? They need replacing every 10 years or so. How about your pillow(s) and blankets? Is it time to upgrade?

10. DIM THE LIGHTS

A few hours before bed, turn down the lights to avoid stimulating your body’s “awake” response.

11. JOURNAL

Photo by Ava Sol on Unsplash 

Some people find that writing about the day’s wins and worries helps them de-stress, while others keep a journal of the things for which they are grateful.

Others find that writing a list of to-do’s for the next day helps them relax.

Experiment!


12. HIDE YOUR CLOCK!

Place your bedside clock where you can’t see it.

This is for two reasons: the light it emits can keep you awake and if you are having a hard time sleeping, seeing it tick away the time also can make you feel stressed.

13. SOAK UP THE SUN

Natural sunlight during the day is a must whenever possible, to help reinforce your body’s circadian rhythms. Try to get some sunlight as early in the morning as you can, and if you work during the day try to sneak out at lunchtime to soak in some rays.

14.SAY NO TO LATE NAPS

Midday power naps (avoiding the deep sleep phase!) can be a great way to recharge. But if you enjoy naps, make sure you take it earlier in the afternoon vs. later. Napping too late in the day can reduce your body’s drive for sleep and make it more challenging to fall asleep when bedtime rolls around.


15. TRY SOME SLEEP-BOOSTING SUPPLEMENTS

Photo by Debby Hudson on Unsplash 

Calming herbal teas containing chamomile can help you wind down before bed – just make sure they aren’t too hot, as your body likes to be cool when it sleeps.

If you absolutely can’t get to sleep on a regular basis, ask your doctor or pharmacist about taking supplements such as magnesium or melatonin, which help some people get to sleep.


16. BE PATIENT AND STICK WITH THE PLAN

If your body’s sleep cycles have been off for a while, it might take a while to see major improvements. Try to be patient – stress is the enemy of sleep!

17. ASK YOUR DOCTOR

If you still are having problems falling asleep or staying asleep – or you feel tired during the day even though you thought you slept – it’s worth checking with your doctor to ask them for tips on how to supercharge your sleep.

Sometimes health conditions such as restless leg syndrome or sleep apnea can interfere with sleep. And if you’ve ever had a job with shift work, you could have a circadian rhythm dysfunction.

So, there you have it, 17 tips to help you supercharge your sleep.

We hope this article helps you supercharge your sleep and in turn helps you sleep better so you can enjoy your waking hours even more! Your recovery time – sleep! – is an incredibly important part of your success.

If you are ready to rediscover your energy and smash each day, then make sure you are getting enough sleep. Check out our blog about benefits of sleep.


And if you want to take advantage of that renewed energy and you enjoy high energy fitness classes featuring some great music brought straight to your home live and on demand, then come check out our growing library of workouts at Boxfit.

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