Category Archives: Sleep

Why Not to Skimp on Sleep!

I had a wonderful night’s sleep last night, which felt amazing considering I was lacking on some good ‘shut eye’ from my weekend!  I can really feel a difference in how my body feels when I get enough sleep vs. not getting enough. On average I get 8-10 hours of sleep a night.  I love to sleep! I go to bed between 9 and 10pm and wake up between 6 and 7am.

Here are 6 reasons to NOT skimp on sleep!

Source

The Harvard Women’s Health Watch suggests six reasons to get enough sleep:

  1. Learning and memory: Sleep helps the brain commit new information to memory through a process called memory consolidation. In studies, people who’d slept after learning a task did better on tests later.
  2. Metabolism and weight: Chronic sleep deprivation may cause weight gain by affecting the way our bodies process and store carbohydrates, and by altering levels of hormones that affect our appetite.
  3. Safety: Sleep debt contributes to a greater tendency to fall asleep during the daytime. These lapses may cause falls and mistakes such as medical errors, air traffic mishaps, and road accidents.
  4. Mood: Sleep loss may result in irritability, impatience, inability to concentrate, and moodiness. Too little sleep can also leave you too tired to do the things you like to do.
  5. Cardiovascular health: Serious sleep disorders have been linked to hypertension, increased stress hormone levels, and irregular heartbeat.
  6. Disease: Sleep deprivation alters immune function, including the activity of the body’s killer cells. Keeping up with sleep may also help fight cancer.

Some common causes of poor sleep or insomnia:

  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Depression or other mental health issues
  • Anorexia or being underweight
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Menopause
  • Age
  • Medication
  • Drug abuse

Tips on Getting Better Sleep

  • Create a better sleep environment
  • Develop a relaxing bedtime routine
  • Get stress and anxiety under control
  • Learn how to get back to sleep
  • Optimize your sleep schedule
  • Improve your diet
  • Get regular Exercise

Click here to read these in more detail

What works for me:

I have never had issues with sleeping (knock on wood!) and I can fall asleep easily every night.

I attribute this with always having a regular sleep schedule. Even when I was younger in high school and college, I always knew getting enough sleep was important and would go to bed at a decent time. I have NEVER pulled an ‘all nighter’ when studying. I definitely used time management to set aside time for school work without it hurting my sleep.

I have also been exercising regularly for a long time and I think that helps with falling asleep, as well as eating a healthy diet and eating enough.

When I do notice I am having a difficult time sleeping I know that it’s most likely due to stress and I try and nip that in the butt as soon as I can and actually make a plan to deal with the stress rather than let it keep eating at me and my sleep.

Breakfast

This morning I jumped right back into my normal routine after my weekend of fun.  It was not as hard as I thought it would be!  I took the pups on our morning stroll and enjoyed the nice weather before it gets in the 90s this afternoon.

For breakfast I had a big ol’ bowl of cereal with fresh strawberries and almond milk.  This combination never gets old!

Fresh Strawberries

Tuesday's Breakfast

I tried a new cereal, which was like Cinnamon Toast Crunch. I loved it!

Yumm!

Workout

Today was a cardio day to kick off my workout week.  I had four days off from the gym due to traveling, which was a nice break and I felt a lot more energized today!

I started with 40 minutes on the Arc Trainer and finished with 15 minutes of walking on the treadmill at an 8% incline.

Dinner

I have some chicken cooking in the crock pot today to make shredded chicken tacos tonight.  I can’t wait! I am always in the mood for mexican food!

This morning I roasted up some broccoli and red potatoes to have on the side with my tacos.  I seasoned em’ up with salt, pepper, chili powder, garlic powder, and drizzled with a tbsp of olive oil.  I baked them at 400 degrees for about 35 minutes.

Broccoli + Red Potatoes

Pre Roasted Veggies

Roasted veggies

Wedding Pics!

Here are a few more pictures from this weekend’s wedding fun!

College Friends!

Some of my best friends from college, we all keep in tough regularly!

Dancing!

Eating Chocolate like a lady 😉

The Bride and Groom had a chocolate fountain, which was amazing.  I had a number of goodies dipped in chocolate including strawberries, marshmellows, rice crispy treats, and pretzels.

Questions:

How much sleep do you typically get each night?

Do you have a regular sleep schedule?

What would you dip into the chocolate fountain?