Have you ever wondered how much sleep you really need? I’ve heard people say I’m a solid 9 hour girl, or 5 hours is all I need. How in the heck do they know? Seriously! Every study shows how extremely important sleep is. Even more important then what you eat or how much you exercise…what??? Tis true. Well, then, I think it’s time to find a less generic way to figure out what your body needs so you don’t fall into the trap of sleep deprivation. You may have just asked yourself, why does it really matter. Glad you asked.
Sleep deprivation can lower our ability to manage stress, this can lead to more adrenaline rushes, which leads to weight gain. Darn it. It can also lower our sex drive, cloud our thinking, and bankrupt our memory. Drunk driving…well, you are just as guilty of that when you drive sleep deprived. Over 1500 deaths and more than 70,000 injuries are attributed to drowsy driving. This is something worth paying attention to. If I didn’t have you at weight gain, I hope I have you interest peaked at an increased risk of death. Yowsa.
So, let’s get right down to it. This simple test should reveal how much sleep you need. I say simple lightly because it does require the same bedtime 4 days in a row and wake up whenever with no alarm. We all know you need to be a magician in most cases to make that happen. That being said, get ready to wave your wand and give this a try.
You need 4 nights and 4 mornings in a row to figure out what your body needs for sleep.
Every day go to sleep at the exact same time. Turn off your alarm clock and wait for you body to wake up. If you are sleep deprived the first couple nights may make for some serious pillow time – your body is hoarding that amazing elixir, sleep, and will take as much as it needs. By the forth morning, Viola! What ever time you wake up (without an alarm) can be used to calculate the amount of sleep you actually need. With this tool in your arsenal you can start planning for ways to get the sleep you need. Having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep – talk to one of our expert coaches to help you formulate a plan to get better sleep and find greater health in other areas of your life as well.