Are you feeling sleepy?. . .

Does anyone else have trouble with their sleeping? I thought exercise was supposed to help you sleep, but  sometimes mine is worse! I am not a good sleeper anyway, lots of things wake me up, including snoring husband! (my only alternative is the sofa which is not really comfy), but often I am awake for ages, or asleep for half an hour then wake up and cant get back to sleep, or sleep fitfully then have trouble waking up in the morning, have to get up for the loo, drink of water, too hot, too cold, aching legs, etc etc etc.

I don't remember the last time i woke up feeling refreshed, think it must have been Eons ago.

I don't really want to resort to taking drugs, i tried sleeping pills once and spent the whole day feeling drugged. i have tried chamomile tea, it either doesn't work or end up working too well once it does work and i spend the next half a day with a woolly head. 

I have tried alcohol, no alcohol, milky drinks, warm baths, nytol etc etc etc.  most of the time people tell me i look tired! can anyone help with any other natural remedies? I presume its all mental as it doesn't matter how tired i am physically, its makes no difference to my sleep, so is there a psychiatrist in the house?


  • SunluvvaSunluvva ✭✭✭
    There are lots of other things you could try, firstly don't run in the night - an early morning run will wake you up for the day and help you become naturally tired in the evening - but don't stay up too late as over tiredness wakes you up (!)

    Get some relaxation/hypnotic cd's/mp3, plug in the earphones and let that relax you. A good friend of my who's very into alternative health swears by showering his lower legs and feet alternating hot and cold water (yikes). Nytol is a natural remedy that works well and you could try a few drops of essential oils on your pillow too.

    My hubby snores like a whole pigsty full of pigs so for the past 20+ years I have worn Muffles ear plugs from Boots, they're wax so you warm them in your hands then fit them into your ears and they mould to the shape of your ears so are comfier than other sorts. They keep out enough noise for me to be able to sleep but you'll still hear things like the phone ring or kids etc so really good.

    Most important of all is 'don't worry about not getting to sleep' - it's a sure fire way to keep you awake all night!

    Sweet dreams ZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzz
  • jennnjennn ✭✭✭

    Agree with the advice given above: your best to leave it at least 4 hours after running to try to sleep and some may need much more time then that, up to 8 hours even.

    Check what your eating and drinking in the day and when you do this, if your carb heavy in the morning and then eating a lot of heavy protein in the evenings (meat, tofu for example) you could try swapping this around or just adding more carbs to the evening as carbohydrate heavy meals normally make people feel drowsy after about 20 mins. Dairy can also help, milk is a good idea and if your running in the early evening is known for its fantastic post exercise properties.

    Caffiene also makes a difference as I'm sure you know. If you must have caffiene (coke/diet coke, coffee, black or green tea, chocolate and some pain killers-read the pack) try to take it earlier on in the day and limit what you do take. You could build up your tolerance but it wont happen overnight. Any sort of alcohol will also keep you awake and funnily enough ginger also can as it is a stimulant as is grapefruit and oranges which can also affect your sleep (not in everyone, just in some). Try not to take these things within a few hours of sleeping.

    If your finding your feeling more energetic and the energy is not dying down then do something with it. If you finish your run and feel you could do more you have many options open to you. Running more, building up resistance with weights, yoga, Pilataes is well known for being helpful for runners as it builds up your core stability which can help your posture and so technique. Try to plan things where this energy could come in useful, things like gardening, helping out an elderly relative or a very young relative! Go food shopping and walk home -or walk as much as you can, treat the energy as a gift and use it to its full advantage; running obviously works well for you!

    If your lying in bed awake, get a book to read, something fairly bland or in short stories (Angela Carters Fairy Taless is a good book and not going to keep you awake in fear gripped unable to sleep, just steer clear of thrillers and action type books with many pictures- try to get your head to build up pictures.)

    If books are not helping, get up and do something but make sure it does not involve technologu as technology can have a stimulating effect and keep you awake.

    Relaxation techniques can be helpful for some but if thats not your style my best advice is to try lying with your feet and legs flat upright against a wall for anything up to 30 mins. This probably wont do anything for or against your sleep but will help with water retention which naturally gathers in your lower legs as the day goes on and means you get up feeling just a bit more refreshed then if you had just spent the night fully awake but lying flat. Helps me anyway!

  • Thanks for all the suggestions guys, lots of info i havent heard of, so lots of things to try.

     Sunluvva, nice suggestion but i have no chance of running in the morning, got a job to get up as it is image I thought i should go to bed earlier, but hubby likes to stay up later so he would just wake me up when he got to bed! (the annoying thing is, he will go to sleep as soon as his head hits the pillow and be snoring before I've got to sleep!) I'll look for those muffles ear plugs thanks. Someone using white noise (pink noise, brown noise, whichever works best) instead of music, so might try that too.thanks

    Jennn, I usually run when i come home from work, between  6 & 7pm  apart from Parkrun Saturday morning, and any long runs on Sunday.  so plently of time before bed. Its not a case of feeling like i could keep going and having too much energy, more a matter of being really tired and not getting enough sleep. good suggestion about the swapping carbs and protein (good excuse for an english brekkie too!) will also try that. 

    I knew about alcohol being a no-no, and for the last month or so have restricted wine to weekend only, but doesnt seem to have made any difference (will keep it up though), didnt know abuot ginger though, so that ginger tea will have to go!  Lucklily i keep away from citrus fruits due to IBS. I read loads anyway, have tried getting up and reading, trouble is i'm usually too tired to make sense of the book, but still can't sleep - perhaps it is just me worrying too much as sunluvva suggests! i go to work brain dead some days. I think some of the problem is getting my head to shut up once i have gone to bed.

    will try the legs against the wall thing, see what that does, someone also said to me prop up my legs with pillows, so perhaps thats the same thing. 

    thanks for all your suggestions and support! I will definately take up some of these suggestions. 

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