sleep

21 Jun 2018

120. 10 TIPS FOR A GOOD NIGHT’S SLEEP

Rest and recovery are crucial components of high performance. Here are 10 tips to improve your routine and habits to ensure a good night's sleep...

AVOID CAFFEINE FOR SEVERAL HOURS BEFORE BED

Some experts even warn against caffeine after 3pm, as it has a stimulating effect and will stop you dropping off.

SKIP THE NIGHTCAP

Alcohol disturbs the REM and Delta parts of your sleep, and is a diuretic, so may result in trips to the bathroom during the night.

SWITCH OFF ALL YOUR ELECTRONIC DEVICES AT LEAST ONE HOUR BEFORE BEDTIME

The light emitted suppresses melatonin, the hormone that controls your body clock, making it harder to fall asleep.

ADOPT A REGULAR SLEEP ROUTINE

Your body clock will adjust to this and prepare your body for sleep at the right time.

DON’T EXERCISE WITHIN HOURS OF YOUR PLANNED SLEEP TIME

High intensity training, in particular, will stimulate stress hormones making it harder to fall asleep.

CHECK THE THERMOSTAT

While many people like their bedrooms to be toasty, the ideal temperature for most people is actually somewhere between 15c and 19c.

KEEP THE BEDROOM FOR REST AND INTIMACY

Watching horror films in bed, playing on tablets or computer consoles, and working will all keep you alert and stimulated just when you need to be winding down for sleep.

CREATE THE RIGHT AMBIANCE

Use soft pastels, whites and creams rather than bright, bold colours and patterns.

JOT THOUGHTS DOWN IN A NOTEPAD NEXT TO THE BED

It has the effect of emptying the mind, freeing you to fall asleep unencumbered.

TRY MINDFULNESS

Building a 10-minute exercise into your bedtime routine can help settle the mind and reset the brain for a good night’s sleep. Try the Headspace app or a simple breathing-focused relaxation technique.