Day 8: The power of an early night

Who doesn’t love the rare occasion when you get between the sheets way before the usual bedtime? I am posting this now because I fell asleep very early last night after an overnight flight filled with broken naps. 😩 Last night’s sleep was great, but what if I headed to bed early when I was feeling good and just because I rate sleeping?

What if I prioritised sleep and recovery over the television or social media scrolling, doing jobs and “having an evening?”

From a sports perspective it is vital to the growth and development of the muscles. Without rest and good sleep an athlete who eats and trains well risks not maximising his or her own performance potential. This applies to daily life too though - we can move and eat right but the rest and recovery is the third pillar in the holy trinity of feeling good and “performing” in life.

Recovery time gives the athlete’s body an opportunity to adapt to the stress of exercise and to replenish energy stores and repair tissue. This is the same for the brain too where it works to organise thoughts and learnings and processes events while we sleep. Anyone who has had any period of reduced sleep or insomnia recognises the impact sleep has on the health of our entire body and our sense of wellbeing.

So why has going to sleep got such a bad rap over the years? It can’t all be down to Bon Jovi’s laid back approach to catching the zzzzz “when I’m dead!” 😏 Society’s preoccupation with being busy, not looking lazy, appearing like we’re managing to do all the things, struggling to make room for me time and the possibility of 24-hour communication through smartphones probably all play their part amongst many other factors.

I am realising more and more that whatever stops me from going to bed at a good time really needs to be worth it. And by that I mean it has to be better than or equivalent to the sense of wellbeing I get when I awake from a restful night’s sleep, knowing that I have given my body a real treat, one that it would thank me for if it could speak.

Perhaps you’ve got your sleep schedule nailed and if so, well done - keep at it! But if you think it could do with a bit of a tweak why not join me in a challenge this week...? 

For the next week I will be in bed by ^insert time here^.

I might read, do some restorative yoga postures or meditate but I will be commencing the body and mind rest that nourish me. 

Notice how you feel over the week and if you like, drop me a line to let me know how you get on. 

Pretending to sleep so I have a picture for the blog 🤣.

Pretending to sleep so I have a picture for the blog 🤣.