I always get a little sad when the fall Daylight Savings Time (DST) arrives although the clock falls back and we gain an hour, we lose daylight. The light will be prominent earlier in the morning while darkness will appear starting in the afternoon. That means by the time I am leaving work, it will already be getting dark.
Twice a year, most of us struggle to cope with the Daylight Savings Time. Experts say it takes most people’s bodies about 48 hours to adjust to DST, so be prepared to be a little sleepier on Monday morning. In order to adjust to losing an hour of sleep, they also say we should start going to bed 15 minutes earlier a few days before Daylight Savings Time actually occurs. Too late for that. The alternative to that is waking up 10 minutes early every 2-3 days, the first two weeks after Daylight Savings Time (10 minutes isn’t so bad. You can do it)
Here are 8 ways cope with Daylight Savings Time:
Eat a good breakfast
Give your body the fuel and energy it needs by eating a good breakfast in the morning. Eat healthy foods like smoothies, eggs, oatmeal, fruit and yogurt or high fiber/low sugar cereal. This really dictates how you are going to feel for the rest of the day.
Crazy right? Chances are you are NOT going to be the only one who is running late after DST. So don’t drive reckless and rush. Take your time and arrive safely.
Be Alert While Driving
Put down the phone. No texting or talking on the phone (unless you have the hands-free option) while driving. Avoid getting into or causing an accident due to Daylight Savings Time.
Limit Your Caffeine Intake
Caffeine doesn’t interfere with your ability to fall asleep, but it can reduce the amount of time spent in deep sleep, thus compromising the quality of your sleep. If you do drink caffeinated beverages, try to keep their intake in the morning and earlier afternoon hours so that you don’t have trouble sleeping at bedtime.
I know you’re probably thinking like me. You’re already going to be tired come Monday. How will you find the energy to workout? But working out releases serotonin, which helps our bodies adjust to the time change. Try working out in the light early morning hours. If your energy levels start to drop in the afternoon and evening, try shorter workouts.
As much as I love a good nap, a nap may prevent you from having an easy time falling asleep at bedtime. So if you’re feeling sluggish in the afternoon, try taking a short, walk around the block/office instead. Being in the sun helps our bodies feel more awake and sun exposure also increases alertness. If you must nap, do it earlier in the day and limit it to no more than 20 minutes.
Prep Healthy Snacks
With our schedules a little thrown off, it’s natural to feel a little sluggish and want to turn to sweets and sugary snacks. But resist the urge to munch on carbs and sugars — those will only end up making you feel worse. Instead, prep a few healthy, energizing snacks. Make sure to add veggies, lean proteins, nuts, seeds, and complex carbs to your grocery list. That might include Greek yogurt with fresh fruit, avocado on whole wheat toast, or even some pumpkin seeds.
Experts say you should not use alcohol to help you sleep. I always thought a little alcohol was good to help you sleep. Alcohol actually disrupts your sleep and the quality of your sleep. You can read more on that here. So avoid or cut back on drinks tonight and every night thereafter.
So keep calm and turn those clocks back an hour,