Healthy Living--The Art of Napping

Many people agree that there are three major components that go into living a healthy lifestyle. Diet, exercise, and rest. I am not enthusiastic about exercise and I am not consistently good at eating right, but what I lack in those two areas, I make up for in naps. If napping burned calories I would be in amazing shape. But, while napping doesn’t have the same effect as running up a flight of stairs, it does have a lot of benefits. It rejuvenates your brain, helps you heal when you are sick, keeps your memory sharp, and improves creativity.

Aside from all of the benefits, I really enjoy napping. My naps tend to range from 45 -90 minutes around the 2-3 o'clock hour and I will look forward to taking a nap for days before it is actually taken. I have even been known to get a bit grumpy if my schedule is so packed that I won’t be able to squeeze a nap in for a few days. I regularly began taking naps in high school and since then I have learned a lot about how to nap. There are four tips that I think are the most important, and when I follow them, I wake up refreshed, energetic, and happy.IMG_8335

  • Help your brain differentiate between regular sleep and naps
    • Don’t get under the covers and don’t wear an eye mask
    • Naps are midday pick me ups. If I get too comfortable or it is too dark in the room, my brain thinks it is time for actual sleep and getting up from the nap is tough.
  • Set an alarm
    • This might seem obvious but I know that I have tried to skip this many times and the results are not pretty. Even if I am only going to close my eyes for 10 minutes, I set an alarm. There's nothing worse than taking a nap and waking up hours after you wanted to.
  • Drink a glass of water as soon as you wake up
    • No matter how short the nap is, I will usually feel a bit groggy when my alarm first goes off. Drinking water wakes up my body and mind and I am ready to go with the rest of my day!