Today was a gorgeous day! I decided to go for a short 6.5 mile ride before breakfast this morning. I don’t fuel up prior to a ride this short (30 minutes) and find no difference whether I do or not.
I had a good night’s sleep last night. Most long-time readers know that I have sleep issues. I suffer from night sweats, easy waking, and sometimes restless legs.
There are a few things that I *know* disrupt my sleep. One is what I eat. If I eat a lot of indulgent foods, I sleep poorly because I always get hot and sweaty on those nights. I don’t know if it is my body working overtime on that food or what, but that can sometimes keep me from overdoing it. That was a weird realization.
Stress also keeps me up, which I am sure a lot of people can relate to. It can be good or bad stress.
Here are some things I have tried and how they have worked.
Tylenol PM – Yep, this works. However, it makes me uber groggy in the morning and for a good portion of the early part of the day. And that is at half a dose! For some reason, I am very afraid to take a full dose (like I will sleep forever), which then makes the medicine not work because it gives me anxiety. What a mess that is! I really don’t like to take a sleep aid like this, but I will if I have aches and pains when going to bed.
5HTP – This is an amino acid that is a natural precursor to tryptophan (the turkey sedative 😀 ). It is also supposed to help with restless legs. Now, I don’t always get RLS. I can go a month without it happening, but then it will happen for a few days in a row. I honestly did not find much benefit with 5HTP for either insomnia or RLS.
Sleep mask: This one I am still waffling on. It does block most of the light, which actually is very helpful. However, it does not block all of the light, which filters in underneath my eyes around my nose. I also have some problems with it staying on all night. There have been occasions where I wake up and it is around my neck. I doubt my thyroid really needs the darkening effect of the mask… I tried adjusting the strap tighter, but then it smooshes my eyes, which is not comfortable. I will keep with this for a while, though, because I am seeing some benefit.
In doing a lot of reading, I came across information that magnesium can help with both RLS and insomnia. And that most Americans do not get enough magnesium on a daily basis. I finally got around to ordering that by the end of June. I also made sure to get magnesium citrate, which is a more easily assimilated form of magnesium. I started taking 200 mg at bedtime. Interestingly enough, this seems to really help me sleep well! I was very surprised. I took it for 3 days and slept well. I forgot it the other night and woke up in the middle of the night and couldn’t get back to sleep. Took the next night and slept all the way through. I am giving this an initial – yes! I obviously need a longer period of time to rule out coincidence, but I think between the sleep mask and the magnesium I am doing much better. I get my magnesium (and most of my supplements) from Puritan’s Pride. Lots of good specials there, and you all know I love a bargain!
So, there is an update on Operation Sleep! I seem to do best at 7 hours a night, and that is my goal. I want 7 hours of uninterrupted sleep.
Question: How well do you sleep?