Rise and Shine: How to Wake Up Energized Every Morning

Rise and Shine: How to Wake Up Energized Every Morning

Do you often find yourself hitting the snooze button, struggling to shake off the remnants of sleep? We all do it! Waking up in the morning can be a challenge for many people, but with the right strategies, you can transform your mornings into a time of energy and productivity. In this blog post, we will explore some practical tips, including how to utilize the Sunrise alarm feature, to help you wake up in the morning and feel energized throughout the day.

The concept of sleep inertia

If you often wake up feeling groggy and sluggish, you might be experiencing a phenomenon called sleep inertia. According to the CDC, sleep inertia is a temporary state after waking up when you may feel groggy and disoriented, moody, slow in thinking and reacting, or have trouble remembering things.

Research show that sleep inertia typically lasts 30 to 60 minutes, but in some people, it could last for 2 hours. So it’s not strange that sometimes your partner could snooze their alarm 10 times before finally getting up.

What causes sleep inertia?

Not much is known, but several contributing factors may contribute to the occurrence of sleep inertia and how bad it is.

  • Waking up in the middle of deep sleep

Imagine this: It’s Monday morning, and the alarm clock rudely interrupts your blissful sleep. You jolt awake as if you’ve been yanked out of a dream. You look at your sleep tracker: you got 8 hours of sleep. How come It feels even worse than some of the days when you don’t get as much sleep?

This is because waking up in the middle of deep sleep cause sleep inertia. Deep sleep, also known as slow-wave sleep, is a stage of sleep characterized by the slowest brainwave activity and intense physical and mental restoration. Our bodies are the least responsive to the environment during deep sleep. When we abruptly interrupt this deep sleep stage, such as through the sound of an alarm clock, our bodies and minds struggle to transition from a state of deep relaxation to full wakefulness.

  • Sleep deprivation

Picture this: you’ve had a string of late nights, burning the midnight oil to meet deadlines or enjoying some well-deserved downtime. The alarm clock blares when you have to get up, you drag yourself out of bed, feeling like a zombie, with a foggy mind and heavy eyelids.

Unlike the last scenario, this time you didn’t get enough sleep. When we lack the needed amount of sleep, our bodies and brains don’t have enough time to complete the necessary sleep cycles and achieve optimal restorative sleep. As a result, the transition from sleep to wakefulness becomes even more challenging.

  • Circadian rhthym misalignment

Now imagine this: you go to bed at your regular time last night, nothing out of ordinary happen. You got mediocre sleep as you normally do, and getting up in the morning feels difficult today, just like every day else.

Chances are you have a slight misalignment of your circadian rhythm with your sleep schedule. The wonders of our internal clock, known as the circadian rhythm, are supposed to make us feel sleepy when it’s time to sleep and alert when it’s time to be awake. When there is a misalignment of when to feel sleepy with the time to sleep, we may struggle to fall asleep. When the time to feel alert is not fully aligned with when we want to wake up, we may feel groggy waking up.

How to overcome sleep inertia?

  • Wake up gradually (with the Sunrise alarm!)

Rather than abruptly jolting yourself out of sleep with an alarm clock, consider utilizing gradual wake-up methods. Gentle alarm clocks, such as those that mimic natural light or soothing sounds, can help ease your transition from sleep to wakefulness. This is exactly why we created the Sunrise alarm feature in our app! The gradually increased intensity of the light may help stimulate your senses gradually and reduce the intensity of sleep inertia upon awakening.

  • Get up immediately

At the end of the Sunrise alarm, make a conscious effort to get out of bed immediately. Resist the temptation to linger under the covers. If you find it difficult to get up right away, at least sit up in bed. This change in posture sends a signal to your body that it’s time to wake up, helping to combat sleep inertia.

  • Get regular morning light exposure

Expose yourself to morning light as soon as possible after waking up. At end of the Sunrise alarms, open your curtains or, better yet, go out for a short walk. Natural light helps regulate your body’s internal clock and suppresses the production of sleep-inducing hormones, making you feel more alert and energized.

  • Eat breakfast right after getting out of bed

Breakfast provides the necessary fuel to jumpstart your day. More importantly, mealtime is part of the body’s natural circadian cycle. Regular breakfast signals to the body that it’s time to start your day. Aim for a nutritious breakfast that includes a balance of protein, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats. Consider options like whole-grain toast with avocado and eggs or a bowl of oatmeal topped with fruits and nuts.

  • Stimulate your senses

Utilize sensory stimuli to awaken your mind and body. Open the curtains to let in natural light, which helps regulate your body’s internal clock and promotes alertness. Play uplifting music or listen to a podcast that inspires you. Splash cold water on your face or take a refreshing shower to invigorate your senses and overcome sleep inertia.

  • Consistency is key

Studies have shown that even breaking a consistent sleep schedule for just two days could create a disruption in the body’s natural circadian rhythm. Therefore, it is very important to establish a regular sleep schedule, follow a consistent wake-up routine, and practice healthy sleep habits consistently.

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