Wake Up, Sleepyhead!

(CARLSBAD, CA) – ZZZZZzzzzzz. How’s your sleep these days? Are you getting enough shut-eye? Or do you find yourself yawning in the morning carpool and nodding off during lunchtime meetings?

If you feel sleep deprived, you’re not alone. The National Sleep Foundation reports that 58 percent of Americans experience insomnia. This figure increases to 67 percent among women and elderly adults.

Minimizing your busy schedule is the first key to logging more slumber hours. But, that isn’t enough. Your body needs quality sleep. And making a few of these changes may just do the trick.

  • “Just Say No” to Caffeine – There’s a reason you’re itching for that cup of java in the morning. Caffeine elevates your heart rate and blood pressure. It makes you feel alert. Caffeine intake can give you a boost in the morning, but it can wreak havoc on your shut-eye if you eat or drink the substance late in the day. Your body needs up to seven hours to break down caffeine. So, try going caffeine-free in the afternoon and evening.

  • Trim the Fat – Researchers from Federal University in Sao Paulo found that high-fat meals in the evening increase the likelihood of sleep disruptions. That’s because fat is digested differently than carbohydrates. If you don’t have sufficient time to digest fats prior to hitting the sack, you may be setting yourself up for heartburn and stomachaches.

  • Turn Down the Temp – Lowering your thermostat at night may help you sleep more deeply. A cool room facilitates a drop in your core body temperature, which is necessary for you to reach deeper levels of sleep. The National Sleep Foundation recommends a temperature between 55-75 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • Get Moving – Getting physically active can help you deal with the daily stresses of life, allowing you to set your worries aside and fall into slumber when nighttime comes. Jazzercise Founder and CEO Judi Sheppard Missett recommends a minimum of 30 minutes of physical exercise at least four days per week.

  • Get on Schedule – Almost all sleep experts concur that a regular sleep schedule increases the quality of your sleep. Your circadian rhythm, the natural flow of your body’s energy, thrives on consistency. Go to bed around the same time each night and wake up at the same time each morning.

  • Wind it Down – If you jump into bed after a hectic, busy, overscheduled day, then you’ll probably find it impossible to fall asleep. Try to limit screen time – computers and television – prior to bedtime, so that your brain has time to settle down. Engage in relaxing activities in the hour prior to bedtime, such as a hot bath or light reading.

Jazzercise, created by Judi Sheppard Missett, is the world's leading dance-fitness program with more than 7,500 instructors teaching 32,000 classes weekly in the U.S. and around the globe. Since 1969, millions of people of all ages and fitness levels have reaped the benefits of this comprehensive program, designed to enhance cardiovascular endurance, strength, and flexibility. For more information on Jazzercise go to jazzercise.com or call (800)FIT-IS-IT or (760)476-1750.

Posted: 4/10/2009 10:08:31 AM by Jazzercise | with 0 comments

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