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  • Writer's pictureSonya Cary

I hate sleeping... Here's why.



Did you know…?


The average person spends about 26 years sleeping in their life which equates to 9,490 days or 227,760 hours. Surprisingly, we also spend 7 years trying to get to sleep.

I have always been annoyed about how much time I waste sleeping. I have told almost everyone in my life that if I could survive without sleeping I absolutely would! It’s not that the act of sleeping particularly annoys me but just how inefficient the whole process is.

As you can see above, almost a quarter of all time spent sleeping is actually spent just trying to get to sleep in the first place. I also find it particularly conflicting that for peak physical performance I know I need A LOT of sleep. Yet, my business/slightly ADD brain knows how many years of my life I am wasting just by lying in my pit. So in this post I am going to discuss how to calculate how much sleep I actually need to recover optimally for fitness gains whilst keeping that number as low as possible to ensure I have enough time to do all the things I want to do.


1. How much sleep do I need?

From my research (important to note I am not a sleep specialist or scientist of any kind. All research is my own and I implore you to do your own before making any changes to your sleep etc), I have seen a general rule unfold. For every 2 hrs, you spend awake and under stress, you need 1 hr of sleep to try and recover from that stress. Therefore if I spent 16 hrs/day awake and under stress then I should really need 8 hours of sleep.

Using this equation I can start to make changes to my daily routine.


Training - I usually spend a minimum of 1hr/day physically exercising (sometimes up to 2 hrs). This time can often run over if I walk around the gym, don’t set specific rest periods or just generally mess about. If I am strict with the amount of time I give myself to train I will then make sure I utilise each and every minute. So, 10 minutes for warm-up, 5 mins for setting up kit/equipment, leaves 45 mins to train. I will do stretching sessions as part of my pre-sleep routine which I will go into in another post.


Work - If I can spend less time actually working each day (and still get the same results) then that would allow me more time where I could be doing stuff that is less stressful/more enjoyable. These activities don’t require as much of a sleep burden and I can therefore sleep less. To achieve this I am going to attempt to become more efficient with my work. By ensuring my to do list is written for the next day before I go to sleep, prioritising tasks and setting myself specific work periods where I know I am awake and highly functioning (usually early in the morning). This should free up some time so I can focus on getting outside, creating content and growing my business, fitness and adventurous endeavours.


Sleep - After going through the above steps my sleep equations will now look like the following:

5 hrs work, 1hr exercise, 4hrs content creation/adventuring, 1hr buffer (for random tasks that pop up). This is 11hrs of possibly stressful work that I need to conduct/day. In theory, I should only need 5.5hrs of sleep. However, I know that to recover more optimally for fitness I will need around 7hrs (I have tracked my sleep for a while now and know I can get 3 deep sleep cycles in 7hrs).


To fit this in (and to facilitate my needy dogs) I know I need to wake up at about 0630. Working back from that 7hrs means I need to be asleep by 2330. If I give myself 30 minutes for my pre-sleep then I need to be finished doing everything for the day by 2300.

Sounds easy enough…. we shall see 😴😴


If you are interested in sleep/recovery then feel free to comment below with any questions you have.


Until next time,

Ieuan

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