As I mentioned in my post earlier this week, I am making it a goal for September to get at least 7 hours of sleep a night. I have actually been working on this one for a while now, since I finally got fed up with feeling so tired all the time.
I’ve been listening to a number of health-based podcasts, and it is surprising how often the topic of sleep comes up as a key to good health. The general consensus seems to be that adults need somewhere between 7 and 9 hours of sleep a night. I found this on the web:
One podcast, “Life in Focus” with Dr. Alessandra Wall & Christopher Browning, actually suggested that teens might need as much as 13 hours of sleep at night, given how much their bodies and brains are growing and changing. Guess I shouldn’t nag my 16-year-old who could sleep the whole day away :) Seems like he is just letting his body do it’s thing!
Anyways…adults need between 7-9 hours of sleep. Until I stated focusing on getting more sleep, I averaged somewhere between 6 and 7 hours of sleep. Getting 7 hours or more was quite rare, and tended to only happen on weekends when I didn’t really have a set time to get up. Since making a conscious effort to get more sleep (and actually setting an alarm to let me know it’s time to start thinking about going to bed – more on this to come in a future post), I have been doing quite a bit better. It also helps that we are still in summer vacation mode, and don’t have to get the kids ready for school in the morning, so hubs and I have been sleeping in a bit and not getting up for work as early as we need to during the school year.
Here’s how my last week of sleep looked, as tracked by my Fitbit:
Not too bad, if I do say so myself! I hit my 7 hour target all but one night, and even then I came pretty close. Wednesday I got some bonus sleep, as I was feeling totally run down, and decided after presenting to a client all morning that I was just going to go home and nap instead of going back to the office. I don’t get to nap that often. It was awesome and I slept like a rock! I really should try to squeeze a nap in more often – maybe not a 3 hour nap, but a half hour every once in a while might be nice.
Here is the detail of my sleep. The lines show times when I was either restless (blue lines) or awake (pink lines):
Even though I’m hitting my 7 hours, I still have some work to do on my sleep quality. I seem to wake up at least once very night and some nights I seem to be quite restless. Not really too sure how to improve the sleep quality. Guess I will have to hit up Google and do some research.
I’ve got one more week of “summer mode” and then it’s back into “school mode” when I have to get up about an hour earlier than I am now. Losing that hour will make it challenging to get my 7 hours. I will just have to make it a priority to get to bed earlier. That should be interesting!
Do you get at least 7 hours of sleep a night?
Have any tips on how to improve your quality of sleep?