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Onset of sleep: quite short (1 to 7 min), this is the transition from wakefulness to slumber.
Light sleep: this is a preparatory sleep phase lasting from 10 to 25 min and is marked by a decrease in heart rate and temperature.
Deep sleep: this stage allows for the body to produce growth hormones. Deep sleep gives the brain a chance to restore itself. In a nutshell, this stage impacts directly on how refreshed you feel in the morning.
REM stage: usually begins around 90 min after falling asleep. This is characterised by rapid eye movements (REM) and is the part of the sleep cycle associated with dreaming. Lack of REM sleep will directly impact on concentration and memory.
Create a tech free-environment: research shows that blue lights coming from electronic devices will disturb melatonin production, the essential hormone for producing sleep. Try to cut off TV/social media scrolling before bed time and minimise your contact with digital devices up to 2 hours before bed.
Minimise caffeine and.or alcoholic contents: studies are showing that more than 2 glasses of wine before bedtime can drastically decrease your deep wave stage by up to 50%
Keep your bedroom temperature around 19 - 21C.
Exercise: there are countless benefits to exercise but in this case it will make it easier for your brain to power down at night.
Keep a routine: as much as possible stick to the same bedtime. A study in 2011 indicated that consistent bedtime and wake time had a direct impact on quality of sleep.
Darken the room completely to allow for the melatonin to be released (this hormone primes you to sleep).
Use relaxation techniques: researchers believe insomnia can be linked to stress and emotions. Meditation, journaling, breathing exercises are proven methods to help you find a more restful sleep.
Power nap: a restorative 10 to 20 min nap during the day can be extremely beneficial to the brain and the body.
The Mardyke Arena UCC are running Free Fitness Classes Online via their YouTube Channel. New classes will be added each morning (Mon-Fri) at 7am and available for you to do in your own time. Next week’s schedule:
The Echo is teaming up with the Mardyke Arena UCC during this lockdown period to give readers weekly tips on how to stay fit and healthy. In this edition, tips on gut health and how to ensure you get a good night’s sleep. See fitness videos at echolive.ie
If you’re doing a fitness class at home, share by using #KeepingCorkHealthy and tagging Mardyke Arena UCC