March is sleep awareness month, something not all of us get enough of! It is important for many reasons to get an adequate amount of sleep each night for a healthier life. Not only do we have more energy when our bodies are rested, but there’s lots going on in our bodies when we are sleeping. When our bodies are at rest they require less energy consumption. This means that more of the energy our body has can be used to help repair and strengthen our bones and muscles. Cell regeneration (aka beauty sleep, it’s a real thing!) and regulation of our metabolism also occurs while we are fast asleep. It is recommended that an adult should sleep at least 7 hours a night on a regular basis. Sleeping also helps to lower stress levels and improve your memory.
If you have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep for 7 hours a night, there are a few things you could try. Exercise is a great way to get the body going and help with the sleep cycle. If you are working your muscles more, then they need to be repaired more. Your body will need you to rest so that it can do its job of healing the muscles that were stretched and strengthened during your workout. Your energy will also have to restored, which comes from a healthy diet and energy consumption while you are sleeping. You could also try setting up a routine sleep schedule that works best for your lifestyle. Lay down the same time every night to get your body adjusted and ready for sleep and relaxation. Set a time to have your last snack of the night about 2 hours before you plan on falling asleep. Also try and to not use any electronic devices an hour before bed and replace using anything bright, light a phone, with reading a book. A combination of these activites can help to relax the body and set you up for an improved nights sleep!