You’ll have to excuse the title of this post. No one is suggesting that you sleep all day. However, something to keep in mind is that what you do at 3:00 in the afternoon can affect how well you sleep at night. The Dallas Morning News this week published a great article that includes a schedule of what to do and what not to do during the day and during the night … if you want to get a good night’s sleep. Here’s a sample:
A nap can revive you and catch up on sleep you may have missed the night before. A NASA study, as cited by the National Sleep Foundation, found that a 40-minute nap improved performance of sleepy military pilots and astronauts by 34 percent.
One caution, though: If you have chronic insomnia, napping during the day could make it worse.
If you meet a friend for coffee after work, make yours decaf. “Most people are affected by it,” Harvey says. “It should be turned off in late afternoon, early evening.”
That’s because caffeine – chocolate, tea, energy drinks as well as coffee – stays in your system six hours or so. If you tend to go to bed around 10 p.m., Harvey recommends stopping caffeine consumption around 6 p.m.
If you’re going to exercise, do it by now. Though exercise can help you get a good night’s sleep, doing it too close to bedtime could instead end up keeping you awake.
“You drive body temperature up when you exercise,” says Harvey. “A natural part of sleep is your body temperature going down, so it’s counter-intuitive if you exercise too late.”
Check out the late night and early morning hours here.