Getting ahead of an hour of lost sleep
Daylight saving time is this weekend (Saturday night into Sunday morning). We’ll be “springing ahead”, meaning we lose an hour of sleep. Bummer – we know. An hour may not seem like very long, but research and statistics show that losing that hour can have some pretty weird side effects. We’ve put together some tips of small things you can do to help you prepare and hopefully avoid painful side effects.
Go to bed earlier
Starting today, go to bed 15 minutes earlier than what you normally do. Then tomorrow night go to bed another 15 minutes earlier. Do this for the four nights leading up to daylight saving and you’ll have helped your body adjust to the hour of lost sleep. If you find yourself struggling to sleep because you’re in bed, use the time to catch up with your partner or read quietly to help prepare your body for sleep.
Change your clock
Change your clocks ahead of time. Adjust your alarm clock, watches and appliances before you go to sleep – but don’t fiddle with your smart phone, computer or smart TV – those will adjust themselves automatically. This will ensure you don’t over sleep and risk missing/being late for any Sunday obligations you may have. There’s nothing worse than sleeping through brunch.
Set an alarm and stick to it
Set an alarm to wake up at a reasonable time on Sunday and don’t allow yourself to hit the snooze button. It sounds like an oxymoron, but getting up early will help ease the impact of the lost hour. Don’t nap either so you’re tired by the time bedtime rolls around at night. It’ll also help with Monday morning with the struggle to get out of bed and head to work.
Soak up the rays
Try not to be lazy on Sunday. Get out and get some sun (if possible) early in the day. The sun will help you shake off the winter blues and make adjusting to the time change a little easier. Bonus, sunlight has been shown to boost your serotonin levels, helping to elevate your mood. You’ll be happier and more energized in the long run.
Hit the gym
On Saturday, around midday hit the gym for some vigorous exercise. “Exercise helps advance the body clock, just as bright light exposure does,” says David Glass, PhD, a biological sciences professor at Kent State University in Ohio. Just be careful not to work out too late in the day or you’ll find it harder to fall asleep as it takes a few hours for your body to come down off the “workout high”. Read more at WebMD.com
By following these tips, hopefully missing that hour won’t be so bad. Check back on Monday for some tips and tricks to get through your work if you find yourself still dragging a little.