Sleep is exceptionally important to your health, but during the light summer evenings it’s easy to keep yourself up and miss out on the sleep your body needs. However with the dark winter nights drawing in you can get yourself back into a good sleeping routine.
Research has found that ideally you want to be getting between seven to nine hours sleep per night – the exact amount will vary with everyone. Without a good amount of sleep you’ll find yourself affected both physically and mentally. Lack of sleep can cause you to lose motivation, which of course can affect all areas of your life. It will also drain you of your energy levels, leaving you constantly feeling tired and can even affect your mood. Low energy levels also mean your body won’t be able to perform as it should.
The darker nights can of course help with getting into a regular sleeping pattern, as your body is naturally wired to want rest and sleep when the sun goes down. You’ll also find that your sleeps may be much deeper and less disturbed due to the long, dark mornings.
Of course a change in light isn’t the solution to a good night’s sleep for everybody, so we’re going to look at a few things you can do help you drift off and hibernate this winter!
Look at your sleeping environment
For a good night’s sleep you should try and create an optimum environment. As tempting as it may be to keep the heating on full at night, try to keep your room cool. To shut off and rest your brain prefers to be cooler, and if it’s too hot you’re just going to end up tossing and turning with a brain that just won’t shut off. Artificial light can be a source of disturbance. Try to make your room as dark as possible for a good night’s sleep. If possible, you could also make your room a no-gadget zone (easier said than done we know!). The light of smartphones and tablets can keep you awake as the blue light tricks your brain into thinking it’s time to wake up.
Exercise and relax
Studies have found that those who take part in some form of exercise during the day are more likely to have a good sleep. Exercise allows your body to use up any pent up energy which would otherwise keep you awake. You don’t even have to dedicate two hours in the gym every day to benefit – you could go for a walk on the evening or even take up a gentle, relaxing exercise to carry out half an hour before bed like yoga.
We’ve also mentioned that you need to be able to relax to get a good sleep. Exercise can help with this as it releases endorphins, leaving you feeling good. We also suggest finding other ways to relax. Regularly using sauna facilities is great way to unwind as saunas, steam rooms and even spa pools can really help to reduce stress and let you relax your mind. They also help to soothe any muscle aches and pains, leaving you feeling much more comfortable. A clear mind is important for sleep, as if you’re stressed and still wound up from the day you’re more likely to keep yourself awake with your thoughts. Alternatively, a deep bath can help you drift off, as can just having some quiet time – ideally anything that lets you take a break from your busy life, even something as simple as turning your phone off for an hour.
Think about what you eat and drink
We eat to give ourselves energy, so really you want to make sure you’re not eating your evening meal too close to when you want to sleep, otherwise you’re going to be lying in bed with all this fresh energy your body wants to use. Caffeine should really be avoided a good few hours before you go to bed too as this can affect your sleeping habits.
Getting a good night’s sleep is so important for your health and well-being. You’ll feel much better in yourself and you are more likely to perform well in all areas of your life.
As mentioned saunas can help improve your sleeping patterns, so if you want to join us for a session, you can find us centrally located in London near Covent Garden and Soho’s gay village. For more information visit our rates and times page and be sure to check our special offers page for any discounts.