Sleeping... I'm just not good at it.
I have been Primal for over four months now! Yay, it is the longest I have stuck with any lifestyle/diet change. I have had weak moments here and there, but overall I have improved my energy levels and lost about 20 pounds in the process. I am at a standstill as far as weight loss goes, but I am pretty sure I know what to do there. My one real problem... well, one of two, is sleep. Like many people I work strange shifts. I work full time, but my in-time can be at 6 a.m. one day and 6 p.m. the next day. That is the extreme, most days I am in between 10 a.m. and 11 p.m (a six to nine hour shift within those times, not a 13 hour shift!) but it still wreaks havoc on my sleep. Should I be staying up until I am sleepy at night even if I have to be up early the next day? Should I take something like Benedryl to fall asleep earlier if I have to be up early? Should I get up early every day regardless of when I have to be to work or when I went to bed? Or should I just do what I do now... which is just wing it, throwing in a nap here and there when I can, but basically sleeping too much some days and not enough others. Does it all even out? Or am I setting myself up for failure? Also... any tips on how to sleep without the TV on? I have slept with the TV on since I was a kid and it is really hard for me to sleep without it. I have tried the radio and a night light and nothing seems to help like the TV. I also leave it on during the day most of the time too, even though I am not watching it. The only time that I was able to go without it on at night was when I was living with my ex. I have no idea why this is. Even now I will read a book in bed, close the book, turn the TV on and roll over to go to sleep? Wtf?
Is it the light or the sound from the TV? You could start by reducing that, by covering the screen with a blanket, and add more light-blocking stuff over a few weeks until you don't need the light anymore, or by slowly turning down the volume until it's super quiet/gone.
I don't think staying up late to fall asleep when you have to get up early is a good idea. Have you tried taking Melatonin? It makes you a bit sleepy, so it's easier to fall asleep.
Unfortunately, there's no way to really make your body adjust when you schedule varies that much. I'm a bit confused about your schedule, if you're saying some days you might work overnight? Do you have shifts where there's only a few hours between getting out and going back? In those cases, I would say take a power nap between shifts, then get an appropriate amount of sleep at a reasonable time, considering whenever your next shift is. So if you had an overnight shift followed by an early morning shift, take a little nap (1/2 hr to an hour) in between, have some caffeine, and if the next day is an early shift, get to bed at a time where you can ensure about 10 hrs to make up a bit, but not oversleep.
For the TV problem, maybe you could try to sleep with your window open to lot some sounds into the room? Camp outside for a few nights on a holiday to get the habit in proper order? I guess the solution would depend on whether it is the light or the sound from the TV that is your 'habit problem'...
Thanks guys. I have thought about trying melatonin. I may do that. What I mean about my shifts is basically that I have no set schedule. I do not work overnights, but today, for example I went in at 5 pm, tomorrow 1pm, Monday I go in at 7 am, Tuesday 3 pm... it's just impossible to get into a schedule. And when I get home at midnight from work, like tonight, I won't be able to fall asleep until 3 or 4 am. I have a hard time winding down. With such static sleeping times I fear that I am making it even worse by sleeping with the tv on. I have tried using the radio, a night light, and the combination of the two and I still can't sleep. So I am not really sure if it's the light or sound. The only time I can sleep in total darkness and quiet is if I know someone else is in the house with me. Which is especially weird because I have lived alone for quite some time and I love it. I have no desire to share my bed, apartment, or my life with anyone, lol. I guess to help myself wind down when I don't have long between shifts I wil try the melatonin. As far as the tv goes I don't see any solution other than going through the hell of forcing myself to break the habit by lying in the dark, maybe for hours, until I fall asleep. I guess I knew what I needed to do, I just needed to talk it out. Thanks
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