Get ready for the July challenge with these guidelines to help you get the best sleep:
1) Create a sleep schedule and stick to it
This is your number one rule. The best thing you can do for your sleeping biochemistry is go to bed at the same time and get up at the same time each day. Yes even in the weekends!
2) Avoid stimulants, alcohol, and other drugs Caffeine is the most common example. You want to avoid it completely after about midday as it stays in your system for a long time. That along with drugs like alcohol interfere with sleep quality too.
3) Get your 7-9 hours of sleep time Anything less than 7 hours has an objective measurable impairment on all aspects of your health. You are built for 8 hours sleep per day, not less.
4) Get 30 min of direct sunlight exposure during the day
This is called circadian anchoring. It allows your sleep and waking hormones to regulate better so your sleep quality improves and it’s easier to actually fall asleep.
5) Avoid intense exercise at least 2-3 hours before bed
You want to be relaxed going into your bedtime routine, not pumped up in hunter mode.
6) Avoid napping during the afternoon (2pm onwards)
You can make it hard for yourself to fall asleep and get good rest at night if taking naps too late in the day.
7) If you can’t sleep, get out of bed
Go to a different room and do something in dim lighting to help you relax. You want to associate your bed with sleep, not anxious lying awake. Go back to bed when you are sleepy.