How To Sleep Better – Expert Tips

This is NOT a sponsored post. I was gifted the items mentioned in my original collaboration. The sleep tips were added from a Press Release. This post may contain affiliate links; these links generate revenue for me but cost you nothing. Photos by Anna Rach Photography. 

How To Sleep Better - Expert Tips

When it comes to our overall health, we often fixate on diet and exercise while neglecting other factors such as stress, mindset and of course, sleep quality. So many of us don’t get a solid eight hours each night so I’m here to share some expert tips with you on how to sleep better. Personally, I’ve always made sleep a priority. I regularly make a commitment to myself to get to bed on time so I can wake up feeling refreshed rather than face a day seeking out doses of caffeine.

Quality, and natural, sleep is also important for those of us who like to be active and train regularly. Rest, recovery and sleep are as important as going hard when working out.

I originally wrote this post in collaboration with Hilarys when they teamed up with Dr Lauren Kita putting together sleep tips to help you get a better nights sleep. As part of that collaboration, I was sent a box of goodies to help me sleep better.

Here are the contents of the sleep kit:

I was most excited about the Lumie Bodyclock – it had been on my Amazon Wishlist for a while and after using it for a couple of years now I can say it probably changed my life, especially during the year I had weekly 5am alarms in the pitch black to teach at Frame.

Using The Lumie Bodyclock For Better Sleep

The Lumie Bodyclock uses a light to gently wake you up from your sleep in the morning. I have always opted to also use the additional alarm sound as a back up, but I always woke up before it sounded! I found that I always woke up feeling well rested and very rarely had to use the snooze button. It also replaced me using my mobile phone as an alarm clock meaning I don’t spend my last few minutes before bed and first moments each morning staring at the bright screen.

Get Your Lumie Clock On Amazon:

Other Better Sleep Tips

I then changed my bed clothes (fresh sheets, dreamy!) and doused them in lavender oil. Lavender is such a calming fragrance, making my room smell like a spa and helping me to wind down when I jump into my bed.

Last but not least, I put the notebook to good use. I kept it on my bedside table with a pen so I can jot down anything that was on my mind before I went to sleep. It usually consisted of things to remember to do the following day. I also love to read as opposed to watching tv – the bright light of the screen actually stimulates your brain, going against your efforts to get to sleep once you switch off! Reading a chapter of my book, in a low light helps me to relax and start to wind down my mind.

A Sound Night’s Rest Should Be A Public Health Priority

The Sleep Council recently called for the government to make a sound night’s rest a public health priority. September, or Sleeptember, was The Sleep Council’s annual awareness raising month. During the month the convicted a survey which shows that more than two-thirds of people (67%)* think more education and public health initiatives from the government are needed to promote good sleep health.

As part of the awareness campaign, ‘The 10 Commandments of Good Sleep’, were drawn up by one of Britain’s top sleep gurus, Professor Jason Ellis of Northumbria University.

The 10 Commandments of Good Sleep

These are Professor Ellis’ definitive tips for getting a good night’s sleep, naturally: 

The 10 Commandments of Good Sleep

1/ Keep a regular sleep routine

Keeping a regular sleep wake schedule helps the body’s sleep system stay in harmony and promotes feelings of sleepiness and drowsiness when your body is ready for sleep.

2/ Get out into natural light

Natural light (even on cloudy days), helps reset our internal body clock. It helps us get over feeling groggy when we have just woken up and makes us more alert. Get out into the natural light as soon as you can after waking up, and preferably around the same time every day.

3/ Exercise regularly

Exercise promotes the quantity and quality of your sleep, making it deeper and more refreshing. However, a few studies have shown that exercising too close to bedtime can prevent sleep so we suggest leaving a window of at least two hours before bedtime without exercise. One of Dr Lauren Kita’s tips is also to do things that energise you during the day:

“Yoga is another great way to integrate exercise and mindfulness. The more you can be mindful during the day, the easier it will be to switch off at night. Over time, you can literally rewire your brain so that this process becomes second nature – allowing you to drift off effortlessly!” – Dr Lauren Kita

4 / Avoid stimulants eight hours before bedtime

Although there are significant individual differences in how caffeine affects each of us, give yourself enough time between your last caffeine intake and your sleep time to make sure that it does not interfere with your ability to get off to sleep.

5/ Don’t go to bed full, hungry or thirsty

Eating at regular times helps strengthen our internal body clock. However, eating a heavy meal before bedtime can make it challenging to sleep at night. Drinking lots of liquid before bed will also increase the chances that we have to go to the bathroom during the night. Conversely, being hungry or thirsty at night can increase the chances of waking up. A balance should be struck between being sated but not full up before we go to bed.

6/ Be screen savvy

Using electronic screens just before bed and in the bedroom can keep us awake for longer as the blue light from these devices has the capacity to prevent the hormones that make us sleepy from being produced. Importantly, it is not just the light that can affect our sleep, but most activities that we use our devices for can keep us awake and alert.

7/ Don’t use alcohol to sleep

Although alcohol is a sedative, it can have a significant impact on the quality and quantity of your sleep. Our sleep tends to become fragile and light when we have a lot of alcohol in the evening and can lead to lots of awakenings in the latter part of the night and feelings of being unrefreshed during the day.

8/ Avoid nicotine before bed

Nicotine is a short-acting stimulant that can keep you awake and so should be avoided in the later part of the evening and during the night if you happen to wake up.

9/ Keep your bedroom cool, dark and quiet

Heat, light and noise can impact on our ability to get off to sleep and increase the chances that we wake in the night. Making sure the bedroom is cool, dark and quiet can improve the quality of our sleep as can sleeping on a comfortable, supportive bed.

10 / Hide the clock

It is common to watch the clock when we are awake at night. For some of us, this can increase our anxiety levels and further prevent us from being able to fall asleep. It is not necessary to remove the clock altogether as many people rely upon their alarm clocks to get them up in the morning. However, having the clock face out of sight will help reduce any sleep anxiety.


All in all, my commitment to sleep always pays off. It means I can make it through the day without desperately needing a caffeine hit and I have the energy I need to train. Such small changes make such a big impact; makes me wonder what other little tweaks we could all make on a day to day basis!

Do you have any bedtime routine tips of your own?

Elle

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This is NOT a sponsored post. I was gifted the items mentioned in my original collaboration. The sleep tips were added from a Press Release. This post may contain affiliate links; these links generate revenue for me but cost you nothing. Photos by Anna Rach Photography. 

16 Comments

  1. October 18, 2019 / 09:31

    Hello! Thank you so much for mentioning us 0 so happy to hear you’re enjoying going to sleep and waking up with light:)

    • Elle
      Author
      October 21, 2019 / 12:52

      Thanks for stopping by! …have loved my lumie; I do have one of those that has the ‘losing time’ fault though which is frustrating and I’ve never been able to get it resolved not at my own expense. I presume newer versions don’t have the same fault?

  2. Tenminutesspare
    May 31, 2015 / 17:15

    I have one of those clocks and it is great, however I now have two little ones so rarely get a gentle wake up! Sleep is important though and I think I value it even more these days!

    • Elle Linton
      June 2, 2015 / 10:20

      Ha! I try to value my sleep now whilst I am single and childless 🙂 …I've seen the difference the clock makes when I have a 5am start (like today) however I do use the sound too as I'm too scared to trust just the light and the sounds is defo not gentle! haha!

  3. Beki Cadd
    May 29, 2015 / 17:25

    I love my Lumie clock! I also use the This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray every night which is awesome 🙂

    • Elle Linton
      May 29, 2015 / 20:25

      I'm kinda excited for winter now! haha! …Oooo will check out that spray! Have loved using the lavender oil! 🙂

  4. Elizabeth Wilson
    May 28, 2015 / 17:45

    Great tips! Thanks for sharing!

    • Elle Linton
      May 28, 2015 / 21:17

      Thanks for stopping by Elizabeth 🙂 sweet dreams!

  5. Angie
    May 28, 2015 / 15:44

    Melatonin and lavender oil on my feet. Sleep like a baby. I have also cut down on using electronics and watching TV right before bed. That is the part I struggle with though. The body clock sounds cool.

    • Elle Linton
      May 28, 2015 / 21:16

      Yeah… putting down the electronics is not easy!! Stick with it and not using them will become your new habit! …I've heard friends talking about melatonin! I'm gonna try the lavender oil on my feet tonight 🙂

  6. Kristen
    May 28, 2015 / 15:11

    That alarm clock sounds awesome! I would love to have something like that in the winter up here in Alaska – when the sun doesn't rise until after 10:00 am it's hard to get out of bed at any decent time because it feels like the middle of the night. Right now it rises at like 4:00 am or something crazy so I'm good on morning sunlight waking me up haha.

    • Elle Linton
      May 28, 2015 / 21:15

      reminds me of my time I spent in northern Finland! It can get depressing when the (light in the) days are so short! …It was mad how energetic I was when daylight lasted 24 hours! Except when I came back to London I felt like I needed to catch up on all the sleep! lol Sounds like a SAD light clock would do you wonders in the winter!

  7. CARLA
    May 28, 2015 / 09:46

    here it is all all all about my NIGHTLY WIND DOWN ROUTINE.I never deviate.Im old 🙂

    • Elle Linton
      May 28, 2015 / 21:13

      I'm old too 🙂 LOVE my sleep

  8. Lesli Ellen
    May 28, 2015 / 09:08

    Elle, the Lumi is a life-changer! I've had a similar Panasonic (I think??) version for almost ten years and I love it. As a total non-morning-person it makes waking up a much less gruesome prospect ;o) I think you'll really notice the difference in the winter months when you get the gentle sunrise effect instead of having to flick on a light in the pitch black mornings. x

    • Elle Linton
      May 28, 2015 / 09:12

      YES! I think I will notice the difference even more in winter! I thought the mornings were bright now until I had the lumi! The one morning I had to get up at 5am was amazing in comparison to before, and I felt so much more energised for the whole day!! Think I will need to buy my mum one when autumn and winter descends! 🙂 x

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