Wondering how to fall asleep easier and faster? You’re not the only one, millions of others have problems with sleeping disorder like unstable sleep or complete insomnia. Those with insomnia have the most difficult time to maintain daily functions, things like nausea, disorientation, slower movement, lack of energy, emotional sensitivity and over-eating are very common.
Falling asleep can be very frustrating, sometimes we just lie in bed and we turn for hours trying to get sleepy but nothing happens so recently I’ve decided to research this phenomenon to find out if I can somehow avoid this. Personally my biggest problem is the nights I go out and have fun in the club I usually sleep late so the next day when I have to be earlier in bed to wake up for work I’m not sleepy enough. This turns out to be a big problem if you have a big day ahead of you and don’t have time for a quick power nap before late afternoon workout.
Easy Tips on How to Fall Asleep Faster
Most of these tips here are based on my personal experience and filtered from tons of articles I’ve read about sleeping. So these are some of the things that helped my get to sleep faster:
- No drinks that contain caffeine after 16:00, sometimes I’ll limit myself to 2 cups of green tea during the day. (I usually have 3-4.)
- Turn off my cellphone 30 min before bed. Talking over cellphone just before bed always causes sleep problems for me.
- Limit water intake 1h before sleep.
- Eating low-fat cottage cheese just before bed. Besides the benefits of slow digesting casein based protein cheese contains tryptophan, an amino acid that has been found to relieve stress and induce sleep, says Dr. Judith Bryans, Nutrition Scientist at The Dairy Council.
- Light stretching especially the neck area helps me relax and fall to sleep faster. I’ve developed my stretching ritual which lasts around 5 minutes, now when I do this ritual my body knows its sleep time.
- Avoid thinking about sleeping when you’re lying in bed. Falling asleep is a natural thing, thinking about it makes us nervous even more if you start thinking about how much time you got left to fall asleep.
Note: If you’re still awake after 1h lying in bed you probably missed the “sleeping window”. The best thing you can do then is to get up take a light walk, stretch or read a book until you feel sleepy again. Avoid using computers or phones.
Importance of Sleep for Muscle Soreness Recovery
I’ve never once in my life heard someone in the gym talk about muscle recovery time or anything about recovery. All you hear is how much someone bench presses, what their weight is and in rare cases someone mentions nutrition or diet. Recovery seems to be less interesting to amateur athletes while the more experiences ones focus much more attention on recovery because they realize that is when the real growth happens. Muscle soreness is a big problem for people that don’t get enough sleep.
Dean Goudie at Bodybuilding.com wrote an article about sleep based on an experiment where he tested the effect of his sleeping pattern on DOMS (Delayed onset muscle soreness). He tried changing the amount of time he’d sleep while sticking to the same diet, workout routine, number of reps, exercises and everything else as much as possible. In his experiment he noticed that with 11h of sleep every night his DOMS was practically nonexistent. But when he tried to decrease the time to 5h muscle soreness was very painful, even the muscles that he didn’t work directly that day would get sore. This is a good example how sleep can affect progress, his test also shows that 8h of sleep is a sweet spot just enough to maintain muscle growth and a good rate of recovery.
Even though the results of his experiment may vary on different people the importance of regular sleep is without doubt crucial for recovery. I know some of you often go to bed late even when you wake up early when you lose track with things like Facebook, PC games or TV but remember give priority to your health it’s the most valuable thing you have.