A bad sleep routine could be the thing holding you back from making progress in your living room gym.
If you haven’t seen the guide for Week 1 of Bulletproof Sleep, check it before you read any further. This series is designed to get you to peak fitness despite all the setbacks that come with a gym-free lock-down. Stay home, but stay in shape.
So the challenge swings back to taking on sleep, which might seem like a hopeless situation for some of you. Maybe you’ve already made your peace with the idea that restless nights and sleepy mornings will be your lot for life. At least as long as your life involves juggling all the duties of a functioning adult.
But there are two facts that should get you to reconsider. One, inadequate sleep can interfere with every bodily process. You can’t just deal with the side effects, because it’s a silent foe that drags you down in every conceivable way. Two, the classic modern lifestyle is tailor-made to make it inadequate. So carrying on with your current habits will likely further the damage.
Unless you’re somehow already perched on the mountaintop, you should always be trying to find that perfect routine that sees you wake up with a clear head that doesn’t need a huge dip in the coffee jar to get it working.
Not that there’s anything wrong with coffee, as I’ve written in yesterday’s fit fix, the emphasis is on needing it. You should be able to function perfectly fine without it, and I’d highly recommend having at least one day in the week where you go cold turkey off your arsenal of stimulants.
Week 1 of Bulletproof Sleep required a set time for turning off your devices. You’d pick a time that gives you the required 8-8:30 hours, and make sure you’ve disconnected from the world by then. For Week 2, we push the requirements that little bit further by making sure you’ve turned off all lights by the same time.
Week 2 – Walkthrough
- Use the same time as Week 1, setting it for 8-8:30 hours before you want to wake up.
- So if it’s 6AM, you can go with 10 as the appointed hour.
- Make sure all your phones, tvs and laptops are switched off or placed in flight mode. If you use them afterwards, make sure they are dimmed considerably. A pair of amber-tinted blue light blocking glasses will be ideal for any post-sunset scrolling or watching.
- Make sure all your lights are turned off. If this feels dangerous, dimmable lights such as lamps will be an ideal bedside replacement. You want a soft glow at most.
- Sleep will come when the body feels it’s appropriate to start winding down. Don’t force it. The steps we’ve taken so far have been to take away the stimuli that break the natural circadian rhythm, telling the brain that we’re still slap bang in the middle of the day.
- Repeat this habit daily. If you miss a day, dust yourself off, and move on to dealing with the next.