It can happen to anyone. You work late. You hit the gym late. You get home late. Whether it’s the change of routine or the fact that you’re still pumped from your workout, getting to sleep at your normal time just isn’t going to happen. So, how can you enjoy a more restful night’s sleep and ready yourself for another big workout the following day? Meditation is a great way to relax and can help you get to sleep even when you still feel wound up. Here are four easy tricks to try next time you are having trouble sleeping.
Progressive muscle relaxation
This technique can be achieved either as part of your bedtime routine or while lying in bed. By concentrating on the relaxation of each group of muscles one at a time, you can help relieve tension and focus your mind. Start by taking a deep breath, tense your feet for a few seconds, then exhale and slowly release the tension. Then work your way up your body using the same process on your lower legs, upper legs, abdomen and so on. Finally tense your whole body, release and relax.
Guided visualisation meditation
With this technique, you simply listen to an audio track of someone guiding you through a meditation. There are plenty of examples online, so hunt around for that works for you. By the end of the track, you should feel relaxed and ready for sleep.
This is another visualisation technique, but one you can try on your own. By using a visual aid, you can focus your brain and tune out noise, stress and repetitive thoughts. Imagine a single colour in your head, and fill your mind’s eye with that colour. With your eyes closed, exhale and imagine your breath is that colour. Inhale and bring the colour back in again. Pause, switch colours, and exhale and inhale the new colour. Continue.
Wind down with music
Lie down and listen to calming music for around half an hour before bed. This helps to relax your mind and body, regulating your breathing and encouraging a deeper, more relaxed state. Be sure to stay away from phones and tablets though, as bedtime screen-time can make getting to sleep even more difficult.
In addition to meditation and other calming techniques, there are supplements that can help your body wind down and recover from a late workout, with sleep and recovery aid supplements
such as Pro Supps
Crash. So even if bedtime isn’t the best time to exercise, you can still get the most out of your workout and get the sleep and recovery you need afterwards.