Friday, June 8, 2012

Mama Needs Her Beauty Sleep

I was in training for the better part of today. Not my favorite thing in the world on most days because I have ADHD and tend to get rather squirmy. Usually though, I beat my brain into submission and make it through, but not today. I was tired, super duper painfully tired. And even though I had the best intentions of taking notes, I ended up taking rather copious doodles. After which I got distracted by Pinterest and then I blinked and we were done. I didn't stand a chance even with the largest cup of coffee I could find. But it wasn't just at work that I noticed my inability to concentrate, it had started at about 6am this morning.
My WOD this morning was on the longer side and exhausting.  200 meters rowing and 30 pushups, 5 rounds for time. I finished in 23:20 and I made my goal of finishing under 25 minutes. But I think I could have done it faster had I not been fighting myself mentally the whole time. I was so sleepy! I had only gotten 5-ish hours of sleep last night, and I found that on my pushups, even though I wasn’t physically burned out yet, I wanted to rest because I was sleepy tired. You see, I spent several hours last night with my mom at the hospital. She’d had full knee replacement surgery and was finally in recovery when Rob and I went to go see her. We spent some time with her, brought her a lovely plant, I helped feed her dinner while she was awake. All in all, she was doing great, but understandably in a lot of pain and quite uncomfortable even through the pain medication. We left the hospital at 9:30pm last night, grabbed dinner at about 10-10:30-ish and then made it home at 11 to get ready for bed and managed to crawl into bed by 11:30pm last night. I don’t think it took me long to fall asleep, but I still got up at 5am this morning to drag myself to CrossFit. I briefly tried to rationalize going for an evening workout today, but Rob was absolutely right in telling me to go in the morning. All I know is that when I get home, before dinner or anything else happens, I am going to take a nap.

Sleep deprivation on one night is hard on the body and increases stress levels and stress hormones for the short term, but long term sleep deprivation increases those stress hormones for long periods of time that have shown in study after study to have long term negative health impact. It also makes it harder to lose weight. Robb Wolf, author of “The Paleo Solution,” has long advocated 8-9 hours of sleep in a perfectly dark room. Now, for the longest time I thought that my magic number of hours was 7. I could get by on 6, but I preferred 7 hours of sleep. I decided two weeks ago, that I was going to try to get as much sleep as I possibly could. Eight hours on weeknights, nine if possible on the weekends. The only problem I run into is that I am a morning person and I have a tendency of waking up at 5 every morning. So I had to start shutting it down at night at around 8:30. As in, crawl into my pj’s, brush my teeth, get ready for bed. So by 9pm on most nights, I’ve been shutting the lights off and going to sleep. So much for seven hours of sleep! I cannot tell you how much better I have felt since I have made sleep a priority! It was grossly apparent to me today when I couldn’t even concentrate on a given task for an extended period of time. I didn’t realize what a difference it had made until now. I personally had to be ok with walking away from my computer or the TV at night in order to take care of my body. I understand that walking away from nurturing your family or taking care of them isn’t always an option. But what if you just traded the late night (fill in the blank here) for an extra hour of sleep? Or what if you—now for some this may be sacrilegious but I’m gonna say it anyway—PAUSED the Netflix, or youtube, or anything else that may be usurping your sleep from you. What if instead of entertainment, you chose rest? Weird concept for most of us, isn’t it? I like being entertained. I like Netflix and youtube and the internet. I’ve come to like sleep a little bit more though.

200 meter row and 30 pushups, 5 rounds for time. Finished in 23:20
Breakfast: Scrambled eggs and 3 sausage links
Lunch: Spinach salad with chicken breast, sunflower seeds, bacon crumbles, hardboiled egg, a few cheese shreds, and ranch.
Dinner: Steak salad with guacamole and chipotle ranch. Update on last night’s dinner. 06/07/12 Since we had to go straight to the hospital after work, we ended up eating dinner at a pizza place at around 10pm last night. I had a salad with grilled chicken. I made the choice to have a couple of the mild wings and a mozzarella stick because I rarely have a chance to have one and I find them delightful. Whoever first thought to fry cheese was a freaking genius!!! Also, not something I advocate for everyday eats. Fun food choice though considering that we were at my FAVORITE pizza place. Notice something? Yeah, that's right. No pizza.  

Just some thoughts about rest. Our bodies need it, and we fight it so much sometimes.  I had to take a nap before finishing this post. And now I'm going to go crawl into my jammies. Good night everyone!




  1. Wait wait wait wait. Is the "mama" in the title not actually . . . apt? I didn't miss something momentous, right?

    1. Hahahaha! Title totally made you read it! Nope. Nothing more momentous. Made you look!

  2. Ooooh, sleep.
    Back when I was a people-pleasing, over-thinking, too-busy, obsessed-over-way-too-many-inconsequential-things type, I was pratically an insomniac. Part of it was my mind being awake and part was just me staying up way too late.
    When trying to get pregnant with Andrew, I was crazy-stressed and my hormones were a mess and part of my effort to shorten my cycles and increase my odds of getting pregnant was to use an eye pillow at night, which simulated sleeping in total darkness (that's a whole fun, different story). I got hooked and still use one a LOT of nights, and now sometimes just an eye mask if I want to ignore the morning sun on weekends. I cherish my sleep and I am so gad that I don't lose any of it on stupid stuff anymore, but I swear that getting 7-9 hours helps me have more energy, keeps my hormones regulated, keeps the extra weight at bay and just makes me a generally happy person! I gladly gave up my former late-night activities to feel this good!
    Wahoo for you! I'll start texting you to find out how many hours yout got!! :)
    P.S. Will be praying for your mom!!!!!