I’ve been a horrible sleeper since 1996.
Don’t ask how I remember the date when it happened. Somehow I just do.
I never had sleep problems before that.
But then it started.
Getting more and more awake as the evening went on.
Taking at least an hour to fall asleep.
Waking every two hours then taking another 30 minutes to fall back asleep.
It was a nightmare (pun intended) that I had to deal with for 15 years until it finally started getting better the last few years to the point where now I am getting tired by 8pm, can’t stay awake past 10 on most nights and get a full eight hours of sleep every night.
I also wake up fewer times during the night than I used to.
This excites me because there is NOTHING more important for your recovery, gains in the gym, immune system and brain function than sleep.
Based on the great improvements I’ve made to my sleep in the last three years here are six tips that should help you do the same:
1) Get a Great Mattress and Pillow
You spend a third of your life in bed so don’t skimp when it comes to buying a mattress and pillow. Get the best you can afford. Essentia makes the best beds and pillows on the market. They’re a great company doing great things. I highly recommend them.
2) Keep a Regular Sleep Schedule
Ever notice how you can go out late and not have one sip of alcohol yet feel just as hung over the next day?
If you want to be a great sleeper you’ve gotta go to bed and get up at the same time every single day.
3) Train Early
If I train after 2pm I won’t sleep. Somewhere between 10 and 12 is ideal for me. Most people who have sleep problems will find that this makes a huge difference.
4) Take New Mood from Onnit
I’ve tried numerous sleep aids and very few did anything for me. New Mood is the best, by far. I recommend taking it on an empty stomach before eating dinner. It seems to work better that way.
5) Take an Ice Cold Dip
Nearly every article I’ve read on improving sleep mentions hot baths or showers. But that does nothing.
To sleep deeply you want your core temperature to be as low as possible. So a cold dip works a thousand times better.
Think about how you feel after swimming in a frigid lake or ocean. You’re napping an hour or two later.
6) Front Load Your Supplements & Water
If you wake up to go to the bathroom throughout the night there’s a pretty easy fix. It might not eliminate the problem completely but it will reduce the amount of trips you have to take.
Simply have most of your supplements during the first half of the day and drink most of your water by noon. Then start to taper the water down and cut it off by 5pm (6pm at the latest).