Daylight Saving Time is upon us. In theory, “springing ahead” means you’ll lose some sleep this weekend. Winston Churchill once described Daylight Savings Time as: “An extra yawn one morning in the springtime, an extra snooze one night in the autumn … We borrow an hour one night in April; we pay it back with gold interest five months later.”
Sounds good, eh? Not so fast. Most people don’t end up, or can’t, take advantage of Churchill’s “extra snooze.” Any shift in your regular daily sleep-wake cycle can disrupt your sleep for several days. In fact, an article in the journal Sleep Medicine Review concluded that even a seemingly small one-hour shift can affect sleep for up to a week. And people who normally sleep less than 7.5 hours a night or generally wake up early have the most trouble adjusting to the time change.
1 Week Before
Fall asleep at your normal time. Hit the hay like you always do. Ideally in the week leading up to the time change, you want to make sure your body is prepared and will feel the same when you wake up the morning of the switch. Afterward, make it a habit of going to bed and getting up at the same time every day to keep your body in sync and get the most out your shuteye.
1 Day Before
Exercise outdoors mid-day. Get in a mid-day run to help your body start adjusting your internal clock to the shift. Don’t head out too late, ideally within four hours of bedtime. Working out jacks up your body’s core temp, which can make it harder to fall asleep. Afterward, work in regular exercise, preferably at the same time each day, to help your sleep cycle stay on track.
Two hacks down, two more to go after the jump…