I ran the Melbourne Marathon.
I remember it so clearly... My legs were pounding the road, people cheering from the side & handing out jelly beans, the heat, the sweat, taking water stops, my fellow runners all around me, the energy that surrounded me and the fatigue I felt as I kept running kilometre after kilometre....
Then I woke up. Exhausted!
I actually felt like I had run a full marathon.
Not "just" a half marathon like I did in 2014 ------>
And not just hosted it (as pictured above) as the Health Coach for "Flight Centre", the largest travel agency in Australia.
Did this mean I had burnt a lot of calories in my sleep? if yes, how many?
Did you know we can burn between 50-90 calories/ hour of sleep (depending on body weight & basal metabolic rate). As can watching movies...like "Sholay", the most iconic Bollywood movie ever! (The gentleman sleeping below the poster is no reflection of the excitement of the movie).
So why is sleep so important?
One third of our life is spent sleeping. This may sound like a lot of wasted time, but sleep is one of the basic necessities of life. We all recognize that we need food, water, and movement to survive, but in the case of getting to bed, sleep is often viewed as expendable. Scientists at Columbia University found that people who did NOT get the requisite number of hours of sleep gain weight!
Both the quantity and quality of sleep are related to health problems like obesity (look up the terms “ghrelin” and “leptin” for more, but you may fall asleep!), hypertension, and cardiovascular problems. Poor sleep can also be related to decreased IQ, irritability, being sick & uncoordinated. Subscribe here if you are awake.
DO YOU NEED MORE SLEEP?
Do you wake stiff and sore in the morning, like this little old lady in Mumbai?
Don't feel refreshed?
Feel sleepy at times throughout the day?
Suffer from impaired memory/ concentration?
Toss and turn during the night?
Have a weakened immune system?
Need to wake up to an alarm clock?
Sleep problems can be alleviated so easily...Late nights, sleeping in, irregular eating habits or travelling to different time zones (jet lag) can disrupt this natural pattern and lead to unnecessary fatigue and poor posture.
If the average guy watches over 10 hours of TV a week, it's obvious he has a lot of opportunity to find more time for sleep (and exercise).
Don’t oversleep (eg: weekends). This can confuse your sleep schedule.
Don’t use stimulants such as caffeine, alcohol or fizzy drinks with your evening meal, cigarettes and sleeping pills.
Don’t nap. If you do need to lie down on the couch (or the footpath!) for a snooze during the day, keep it under 25 minutes. My mom calls it "Power nap", when I lived in Spain, they called it siesta.
Don’t exercise within three hours of bedtime. (Jacking up your nervous and cardiovascular system will make it nearly impossible for your body to shut down and get restful sleep).
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Do go to bed the same time every night: The more your body is on “rhythm” the easier it will be to fall asleep and wake up. Keep a sleep journal to document your hours and be able to review your patterns.
Have a “pre-sleep” routine. This can include relaxing music, reading, muscle relaxation, breathing exercises, practising gratitude, visualization etc. Turning the lights low in the house thirty minutes before bed can jump start the sleep process.
Doing some light stretches before you sleep helps you calm down, de stress and relax, follow me on Facebook where i am sharing a yoga pose/ stretch each day
Keep your room cool: Since your body cools right before sleep, a warm or hot room can make it difficult for your body to shut down and get to sleep.
Keep your room quiet.
Eat light meals. Otherwise, like me, you will doze off eating "Just One More".
Keep your room dark. Melatonin, which your body produces naturally and is essential for sleep, is only released in the dark.
Keep your TV, phone, and computer out of your bedroom. These are distractions that can excite the body with both sounds and lights.
Although, kids can sleep anywhere!
This is my son, Oliver, 10 years ago (Awwww.....) He never sleeps now!!
Sleep v/s being Overweight, Uncoordinated & Sick.... it's an easy choice!
After all, we are the result of the behaviours we maintain....
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Thank you for sharing my journey and allowing me to be a part of yours.