Posted by: crustynomad | May 3, 2012

Sleep, where art thou?

Another day another update…

First of all I’m not promising daily updates for all 444 days but let’s see how things go. I won’t go into the finer details of what I ate and my exercise this time because it was not dissimilar to yesterday so today I will be focusing on sleep and making sure I get enough of it.

Bad sleep patterns and lack of sleep generally has been my nemesis over recent years. I will explain more in other updates but the root cause is essentially me wanting to spend some time by myself before going to bed.

As someone who always used to do things like holidays alone, the crowded nature of family life vastly reduces (if that’s not an oxymoron I don’t know what is) the amount of ‘me’ time I have. This is why I like travelling by bus because it gives me up to an hour a day (30 minutes each way) where I can read, listen to music or podcasts, think about stuff, plan, prepare or just chill.

For many people that would be enough but I would like that opportunity at home too. It is my castle after all. As a rule I rarely get to choose what’s on TV but that’s not something I’m bitter about, it’s a choice I make to keep the family happy. My wife Jo likes to have some time to herself too and she knows that if I fall asleep before she does she will need the earplugs because apparently I snore. I can’t believe that actually but I’m not going to argue.

The point is that circa-midnight time is when I can do my things as well as planning and even exercise using the Wii Fit Plus. In fact, the latter could prove to be a key element in ensuring I get that proper exercise I need during this challenge. I can’t rely on that though and if I’m serious about the marathon it will have to part of the plan, not all of it.

When I ran regularly, the mornings worked best for me but that’s not condusive with late nights so I am going to have to find a balance. The office has a shower so a serious option would be to make a lunch hour run part of my routine.

And that’s the key: Routine!

If I really want lasting benefits I do need a routine of healthy eating, better sleep patterns and regular exercise. They say it takes between 21 and 66 days to create a habit but it’s probably more accurate to say it takes 21 to create a bad one and 66 for a good one to stick.

My bad sleep habit is nearly a decade in the making which, not surprisingly, coincides roughly speaking with getting married and becoming a parent. I’m not blaming them though because there is ALWAYS something we can do. I am now at least acknowledging the fact that I have to make the change.

So how am I doing since I started the challenge?

For the first two nights I had an average of about six hours sleep which I’m afraid to say is not bad for me. Last night, however, was a bad one because I was catching up on a work project and then preparing for my radio show on Saturday. This left me with around 3.5 hours by the time I got up – that’s simply not enough. Tonight will be better.

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