Getting more sleep was my key goal for 2011. Here’s an update…not so much.
If anything, my sleep deprivation might be worse so far in 2011 because there’s just so much that I want to do. Like I said in my year-end post, I resent the small amount of free time I have so I just steal hours from my sleep. Recently, what’s been worse than the stubborn drive of mine to stay up is the sheer inertia of my exhaustion. I’m not even actively choosing to still be awake anymore, I am just too tired to move from the couch downstairs to the bed upstairs. Listen to how messed up that is–too tired to go to bed.
Part of the problem is the winter running group I joined to help keep me motivated to train for a 10 mile race in April. I did this last year too and I forgot about how much it messed with my sleep schedule. Every Saturday since mid-January, I’ve had to get up earlier than I want to–about as early as I get up for work. Getting up early six days in a row means that I sleep like the dead on Saturday night. Like snooze 4 or 5 times without being aware of it deep. I get up really late on Sundays and then have trouble getting to sleep on Sunday night and thus start off each week already sleep deprived. You would think after 9 weeks of this (and 16 weeks last year) I would have figured out a way to get a handle on this, but apparently not.
I’m pulling out the big guns on this sleep issue…LENT. While I’m sure the Pope would excommunicate me if he was even aware I existed (I am Satan, you know!), there are certain things that stay with a person after 14 years of Catholic school. One of those things for me is the Lenten promise. I’ve long since passed the time that the fear of God made me do this, but for some reason I have better willpower to do difficult things during Lent.
So a few years ago I decided to take advantage of this situational willpower of mine. Since then I have given up fried foods, TV (!), and dessert (twice!) for Lent, all successfully. Two years ago, I tried sleep for my Lenten promise and not once did I go to bed by the appointed hour of 11pm (or even by midnight). My sleep problem is a pesky little bitch.
But I’ve had enough. I’m so tired lately that my executive functioning is noticeably off. I’m exhausted yet wired all at the same time. I give my best hours to work, so that means it’s really my personal life that is suffering the most and that’s not acceptable.
Given the recent difficulty I have had physically getting myself to the bed from the couch where I’m entrenched with my entertainment, my Lenten plan this year is simple. Each day during Lent my goal is to be in bed at 11pm. I’m not saying lights out, I’m saying physically in the bed. So as long as I am in bed, I can read, screw around on the iPad, or do anything else that can be done in bed (!) after 11pm. If I start getting groggy like I have been, rather than having to forklift my ass off of the couch and go all the way upstairs, I can just close my eyes and drift off to dreamland.
NOTE: I’m finishing this post around 11:10pm, so already you can see how fantastically this is going. Love the irony of breaking my Lenten promise on day one because I was writing a blog post about my Lenten promise. Oy vey!
*title comes from ‘Insomnia’ by Faithless, which ironically came up on my iPod shuffle last night during my run